The National Association of Men's Morris & Sword Dance Clubs

Traditional Morris Events

These lists were originally compiled from the Morris Ring Directory index of traditional events and later added to with information gleaned from our members' web sites a week or two before the each period.. Any Morris Side who has an annual event is invited to send details to the webeditor [at] themorrisring.org (WebEditor), and do let us know if the tradition has lapsed!

Please note that the entries are all published in the good faith that the event actually occurs! You should always check with the Morris Side or event organisers before travelling. Links to their contact details and web pages are included.
The links given below will take you to more detailed desciptions of some of the seasonal events - many of the traditional Whitsun events have now transferred to the late Spring Bank Holiday at end of May.

 

January Easter St. George's Day May Day Whitsun Summer Christmas

Links to the events and contact information are included where possible, but nowadays a search using Google (or other search engine) will probably find more details. Corrections and updates to the webeditor [at] themorrisring.org (WebEditor)

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TRADITION IS AS OLD AS THE PERSON WHO TAUGHT IT TO YOU.

Abbots Bromley Horn Dancers
The Horn Dance - Abbots Bromley - photographed by Sir Benjamin Stone 1838-1914 - is one of the few ritual rural customs to survive the passage of time. The first written reference to the Abbots Bromley Horn Dance was for a performance at the Barthelmy Fair in August 1226.  One of the antlers has been carbon dated to the 11th century. Today the Horn Dance takes place annually on Wakes Monday - but check their web site!

 

Thomas Blount's Kidlington M/S

 

 

Thomas Blount's Kidlington M/S, "Antient Tenures of Land, and Jocular Customs of some Mannors. Made publick for the diversion of some, and instruction of others." London 1679.   Note that the original citation names Kidlington not Kirtlington. Kidlington is about four miles south of Kirtlington, which is a dozen miles north of Oxford. However it is generally considered that this was an error in naming Kirtlington. There is a reference to dancing in Kidlington, Jackson's Oxford Journal, 27 May 1843, page 3; the Ale died out in the early 1860s.{See Chandler, pages 179, 181 respectively}
The Ale was started again when Kirtlington Morris was revived in 1979. The Ale is now a very popular event among Morris Dancers, taking place at the end of May, beginning of June, each year.

 

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