About Hexham Morris
Morris Dancing... a little bit of history
The Morris is England’s oldest surviving tradition. For at least five and a half centuries (perhaps much longer), it has been performed to welcome the spring and to mark the turning of the year at midsummer and midwinter. One version was danced in Hexham until the 19th century, when – like many other rural customs – it fell into decline.
The revival of Morris dancing in Hexham began in November 1977 and in the towns folk club Hexham Morris was born. The group started slowly, but grew to incorporate the Hexham Morrismen and Hexhamshire Lasses. The teams are the strongest they have ever been with around 45 members between them.
The Hexhamshire Lasses is a women’s dance side.
The side was conceived during the winter of 92/93 by the wives and friends of Hexham Morrismen following their 15th Anniversary celebrations.
We perform in our own style a repertoire of traditional dances using garlands, sticks and handkerchiefs together with several compositions of our own. A selection of lively step clog dances are also included in the repertoire performed by the Hexham Clog team.
The Hexhamshire Lasses welcome new dancers at most times but if you have not danced morris before then it is preferable to come in September when we begin our practices again. Morris is a strenuous dance form and a reasonable level of fitness is important as is a good sense of rhythm, coordination and enthusiasm.
Hexham Morrismen have earned an excellent reputation for their dancing and are now established as one of the best Cotswold Morris Dance teams in the North. They perform a full and varied programme of Cotswold dances from Fieldtown, Ducklington and Lichfield also border and North East rapper sword dances.
They dance at many events up and down the country and on Thursday evenings during the summer can often be seen dancing outside (and sometimes inside) a number of public houses. Everyone welcome to join us afterwards for some music, singing and dancing. They are frequent travellers abroad and have represented the UK at many international festivals.