Jon Doran

Jon Doran is a Newcastle based folk singer and multi-instrumentalist from Gloucestershire. He is a splendid versatile musician, playing fiddle, guitar and bouzouki. Jon is also a fine singer and stage performer. He was a 2019 finalist on BBC Radio 2’s Young Folk Awards and a recent winner of Bromyard Folk Festival’s ‘Future of Folk’ competition.

Press-ganged at an early age into a Cotswold Morris side, he served his time there playing fiddle and dancing. Jon’s upbringing has since been steeped in the folk customs of England. He is passionate about bringing this forward in the music he creates.

Although Jon’s roots lie deep within the English folk tradition, after a year of studying Norwegian fiddle technique in Universitetet i Sørøst-Norge and four years as one half of the Anglo-Scottish duo, Janice Burns and Jon Doran, Scandinavian and Scottish influences now enrich his playing.

Mossy Christian

Mossy Christian is an award winning professional musician, singer, and dancer. He specialises in the musical traditions of Lincolnshire and Yorkshire. Drawing on a rich and diverse repertoire of traditional dance tunes and folk songs, charting the lives of everyday people, in their work and recreation, from the 1700s to the present day.

Delighting audiences across the UK, with performances at festivals and folk clubs from Whitby to Sidmouth, Morpeth to Nottingham, his shows are a treat not to be missed.

Ryan Young and Chris Amer

Scots Trad Music Awards ‘Up And Coming artist of the year’, Ryan Young is an emerging young fiddle player bringing new and exciting ideas to traditional Scottish music.

He is accompanied by Scottish guitar player Chris Amer who is slowly but surely establishing a reputation for his tasteful, distinctive, musically intelligent playing style. Chris’s playing comfortably sits on the ever-blurring boundaries between jazz and traditional Scottish music. Playing together, they are a real joy to watch and listen to.

Close Quarters

Close Quarters are Sandra Harrison and husband Steve with friend Jen Wilson.

Their repertoire, delivered a capella, includes traditional and contemporary songs, gospel, music hall and some self-penned songs from Steve. A couple of his songs are sung quite widely and recorded by others on the folk circuit. They sing in close harmony and give their audiences lots of choruses to join in with.

Mike Willoughby Duo

Mike Willoughby’s passionate songs take in a swathe of topics from Northern cultural roots to current ecological issues:

There are also deep meditations on the landscape and the meaning that poetry and song have in our lives.

Mike sings and plays bouzouki, melodeon and harmonica.

Rick Middleton joins him on vocals, double bass, banjo-ukulele, guitar and percussion.

The pair have played together in various lineups over 20 years and are Furness Tradition stalwarts.

Out on A Limb

Out on a Limb is a newly-formed ceilidh band with a twist.  Ali (fiddle, dance caller), Dave (banjo and guitar), Brian (brass) and Neil (keyboard and everything else) have between them been playing for approximately 170 years in various guises: orchestras, shows, trad and swing jazz, soul, blues and rock bands, and of course ceilidhs.

Members have played at small and large festivals locally and further afield (including Cambridge Folk Festival).  

Rita Baugh

 Rita Baugh is a local singer/songwriter and guitarist with heart and soul, bringing honest originals drawn from life and the occasional cover, preferably something unexpected and always made her own. 

Dance Sides

Eccleston Heritage Clog

Eccleston Heritage Clog are a community group promoting and developing clog dance as a local tradition.  Led by Alex Fisher the dance team  performs a variety of clog dance styles & traditions – from Lakeland Hornpipes, Competition Hornpipes & Waltzes to Street Clog Steps, Lancashire Irish steps & Music Hall Ragtime steps.

Crook Morris

Crook Morris are based in Kendal. They are proud of the unique traditional Morris dance heritage to be found in England and dance Cotswold Morris Dances, Border Morris Dances, Rapper Dances and perform Mumming Plays. They also have their own dances, including ‘Knickers in The Hedgerow’, that several other sides have taken up.

The key aim of the side is “to dance as well as we can, then we love to entertain our audience and last but not least we aim to have as much fun ourselves as possible.”

At DERT 2014 they were Winners of: Open Rapper Competition, Newcomers Competition, SDU Competition ( for teams whose main form of dance is not Rapper).

It took us years to persuade Crook Morris to come to Furness Tradition.  They are now a welcome, regular contributor to the festival.


Taffy Thomas

Furness Tradition patron Taffy originally founded two companies to promote folk theatre and rural arts. He fronted and performed in the Fabulous Salami Brothers, the popular touring unit of Charivari, while The Magic Lantern travelled Europe illustrating folk songs by use of shadow puppets. He was also a prominent member of Ulverston arts based group Welfare State.

A stroke at the age of 36 brought another change in direction when he turned to storytelling as self-imposed speech therapy. Now widely acknowledged as England’s leading proponent in the art of traditional storytelling, Thomas boasts a repertoire of over 300 tales and elaborate ‘lies’ collected predominantly from oral sources and folklore.

In the 2001 New Year Honours List, he was awarded the MBE for services to storytelling and charity and in October 2009 Taffy accepted the honorary position of first Laureate for Storytelling which ran for two years from January 2010 to January 2012. He is currently artistic director of Tales in Trust, the Northern Centre for Storytelling, based at The Storyteller’s Garden in Grasmere.

Ian Douglas

Furness Tradition stalwart Ian Douglas is a Storyteller and Theatre Maker Who works extensively across the British Isles. With over 20 years of experience delivering storytelling, performance and theatre activities for schools, arts organisations, communities and festivals across Britain, he has developed a practise approach which mixes sensitivity, comedic energy and wit leading to a style all of his own.

The origins of Ian’s work are steeped in the traditions of street theatre which has helped him develop his unique storytelling style. His work has been described as ‘truly inspirational’ and draws upon a rich vein of British folk tales and world myths. He was at one time apprenticed to Taffy Thomas.

Mark Borthwick

Lake District Storyteller Mark Borthwick! Traditional oral up-close storytelling at roadsides and gravesides, schools and paddling pools.

Ulverston born Mark was originally a member of our youth music project Freebandreel. He has gone on to develop storytelling as well as his music and has performed at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.