Mayor Of Merton Joins Morris Dancers On Wimbledon Common

Greensleeves Morris Men mark May Day

Mayor of Merton, Councillor Brenda Fraser, braved the early morning chill to join friends and a crowd of other early risers watching Wimbledon’s own Morris dancing club, Greensleeves Morris Men, celebrate May Day with a sunrise performance of traditional dances at Wimbledon Windmill on Wimbledon Common.

Coffee with rum was offered to spectators attending the annual 5.30am dawn break performance to help ward off the early morning chill.

Councillor Fraser stole the show during the dance “Brighton Camp”, joining in to be hoisted onto Greensleeves dancers’ shoulders at the finale.

The mayor then joined Greensleeves for a full English breakfast followed by traditional May Day singing at Wimbledon Squash and Badminton Club before heading off to a day of official engagements.

“I’ve had a wonderful morning with everyone here. I’m an early riser, so I was looking forward to it,” commented Councillor Fraser.

“I knew I was going to be lifted during the dance. The way Greensleeves lifted me I had no time to be frightened. Greensleeves were careful and I wasn’t dropped!

“I’ve seen a few young faces among the dancers today. It’s good to see a wide age group.

“It’s great to continue this tradition; long may the Morris tradition survive.”

Performed every May Day, Greensleeves’ early morning Morris dance programme is one of Wimbledon’s lesser known annual traditions.

The May Day morning performance was the highlight of a busy Bank Holiday weekend of dancing for Greensleeves that began with the club’s annual Wimbledon Day of Dance on Saturday 29 April.

Greensleeves performed dances featuring a wide selection of Morris traditions to Bank Holiday crowds at various stops including Morden Hall Country Fair, Wimbledon Windmill tea shop, Wimbledon station forecourt and Merton Abbey Mills (below).

“Our dance at the break of dawn is to celebrate May Day and the start of our summer dancing season,” explained Dave Legg, Squire (leader) of Greensleeves Morris Men. “It’s been a great morning. The spectators were in good spirit in spite of the early start.

“The club is in good heart and we are looking forward to a successful summer dancing season.”

Greensleeves next perform in Wimbledon on Friday 19 May beginning at 8pm outside the Alexandra pub at 33, Wimbledon Hill Road, SW19, and then at 9pm outside the Hand in Hand and Crooked Billet public houses at the Crooked Billet, Wimbledon Common.

Founded in 1926, Greensleeves is London’s longest established Morris dancing club and has been based in Wimbledon SW19 for the past 35 years.

Details of Greensleeves summer season dancing programme are listed on the club’s website at www

For further information also please contact Greensleeves Secretary (known as the Bagman) David Cooling on 07500993993 or

May 11, 2017