When lockdown eased, we danced out at local pubs, and are now back to regular practices on Monday evening at Queen's Walk Community Centre. We did Zoom together during the pandemic
We would be happy to welcome anyone interested in joining us to come and watch, chat, and come to practices when we restart. Give us a call!
Morris (full title "The Foresters Morris and Sword Dancing Club")
was formed in 1952, and was the first morris dancing club in Nottingham.
It is still the best! Since we are near to Sherwood Forest, we have
Robin Hood as our logo. The club was formed from the demise of other
sides in nearby towns, which had been in existence in the 1930s, and
were kept going by ladies such as Frances Downing during the war years. More here. We welcome new members, anyone wanting to have a try!
We perform mainly
English morris dances from the Cotswold and border regions, together
with some dances from Lichfield. At appropriate times of year we perform
a traditional local Plough Play (a type of
and mummer's play. We also include rapper
sword dancing in our repertoire. For more details about morris dancing,
You can read some of our handouts of background
information or more background information
or still more on morris dancing. Or would
you like the French versions of these
documents? Or for a more sober and serious view of the whole thing
you can look at a BBC programme transcript.
In the summer on
Monday evenings, we dance at pubs in the local area. At any time of
year we perform by request (for a fee!) at larger events. We are currently taking bookings for the coming year. We will be performing some of our regular bookings such as
- Mayday dawn at the Robin Hood statue by Nottingham Castle
- the Robin Hood Beer Festival run by CAMRA each year
- Boxing Day duck racing at Bottesford
Dance outs booked so far for this 2022 season include:
- Sunday 1st May: 5:20am - Robin Hood statue, Nottingham Castle
- Sunday 15th May: Dove Cottage, Canal Lane,
- Monday 16th May: The Plough, Main Street, Hickling LE14 3AH, 8pm
- Monday 23rd May: Riverside Bar (Beeston Marina) 8pm followed by and Commercail Inn
- Monday 30th May: The Old Green Dragon, Blind Lane, Oxton NG25 0SS, 8pm
- Sunday 5th June: West Bridgford afternoon 2:30pm
- Monday 6th June – Spanish Bar, South Street, Ilkeston DE7 5QJ, 8pm.
- Monday 13th June – The Air Hostess, Stanstead Avenue, Tollerton NG12 4EA, 8pm.
- Monday 20th June – The Old Ship, Main Street, Lowdham NG14 7BE, 8pm.
- Monday 27th June – Woodlark, Church St, Lambley, Nottingham NG4 4QB, 8pm
Our dance outs last year were at the following venues:
- Mayday dawn at the Robin Hood statue
- Monday 7th June 8pm The Plough, Hickling
- Monday 21st June 8pm Air Hostess, Tollerton
- Monday 12th July Old Green dragon, Oxton
- Monday 26th July Commercial Inn, Beeston
2nd August Spanish Bar, Ilkeston
- Monday 16th August Trip to Jerusalem, Nottingham
- Monday 23rd August Woodlark Inn, Lambley
- Saturday 16th October Nottingham Robin Hood Beer Festival at Trent Bridge Cricket Ground
- Sunday 26th December Bottesford Boxing Day Duck Race
We are joined by the Greenwood Step Clog Dancers at most of these events.
Our programme for 2022 is in preparation!
A selection of
photos of us from our formation in the 1900s up to our latest show is
arranged by year and available here for modern photos or here for ancient ones,
most photos copyright © Eric
Foxley. Over 2000 photos from 1967 onwards can be accessed from
those pages. In addition there are many videos available on YouTube by searching for "Foresters Morris".
A selection of
mp3 files of our dance music, singing and mumming are available here.
Why are we such good dancers?
Because we practise
every week at the Queen's
Walk Community Centre in the Meadows area of Nottingham on Monday
nights in winter, from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m., then socialise over a drink!
Visitors are always welcome to come and try it out, contact any
member or phone Eric on 01159786858.
How do we spell our name?
We are the "Foresters
Morris", not "Forresters" or "Forester's"
or "Forrester's" or "Foresters' "!
How can you contact us?
If you are interested
in finding out more, or in coming along for a taster session at one
of our practices, or in booking us to appear at a function of some sort,
phone our squire Stewart on 0115-914
1061 or Steve on 01159204981 or email Steve here
What do you think of us?
The following was found on the blog of a student who had seen us:
Last night, I watched a bunch of grown men dance around with handkerchiefs and sticks while wearing bells and flowers at the Sword Dancing/Clog dancing event, which was even more entertaining than I dreamed, even if it was a bit unexpected. When someone says "sword dancing" I usually imagine a bunch of muscular, shirtless men doing a bunch of dangerous stunts with pointy swords. Instead, we got hilarious scholarly men doing authentic, if a bit silly, old dances, complete with a jester of sorts who went around hitting girls in the head with a bladder, which he assured us will encourage pregnancy in the coming year (I should certainly hope not!). Then we went out to the (cold) conservatory to watch clog dancing, which looked particularly challenging but also very entertaining, and was complete with background stories.
The revival of English Morris Dancing started when Cecil Sharp saw the Headington men dancing near Oxford on Boxing Day 1899. Eric is lucky enough to have been given Cecil Sharp's specially made 3-hole pipe. Full details and
photos of Cecil Sharp's original 3-hole pipe are here.