Wimbledon's Morris Dancers Get Summer Underway

Local performances are coming soon

The next confirmed public performance of our local morris dancers - Greensleeves Morris Men - will be on Friday 13 June.

Evening performances will take place at 8pm at the Alexandra Public House at 33, Wimbledon Hill Road, SW19 7NE, and at 9pm at the Crooked Billet Public House at 14, Crooked Billet, Wimbledon Common, SW19 4RQ.

Their summer season began at dawn on May 1 when Mayor of Merton, Councillor Krystal Miller, and her consort braved the early morning rain and chill to join friends and other early risers to watch them welcome summer.

"Thank you to Greensleeves. It's been a lovely morning and a great way to start the summer. Morris dancing is very energetic and great fun," commented Councillor Miller.

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

"This is one of the best turnouts we have had for May Day morning. We are delighted to have the Mayor with us as we value our role as Merton’s official Morris side," said Chris Benson, Squire (leader) of Greensleeves Morris Men.

"You are sharing and enjoying a bit of English traditional culture. The first surviving records of Morris dancing in London date from 1448. We are following an old tradition. There has been Morris dancing in this area for hundreds of years."

"We have got an interesting dancing season ahead," Benson said. "We have practiced hard over winter and now we have the chance to show our skills. We are looking forward to dancing out this summer."

Founded in 1926, Greensleeves (www.greensleevesmorris.org.uk) is London's longest established Morris dancing club and has been based in Wimbledon for the past 33 years.

Greensleeves meet for practice sessions every Friday evening from September to April from 8pm to 10pm at South Wimbledon Community Centre on Haydons Road.

This September Greensleeves will run a series of Friday open evenings throughout the month for those wanting to try the Morris for themselves.

Beginners are welcome and inquiries can be addressed to the club secretary (known as a Bagman) David Cooling on 07500-993993 or bagman@greensleevesmorris.org.uk.

May 20, 2014