Johnny Haslett takes us on a tour of his book Morris Dancers and Rose Queens (Volume 1) – an anthology of reported Carnivals and Galas in West Lancashire between 1888 and 1900, together with the accompanying morris dancing activity.
This is a definitive work about the sociology of Lancashire at the end of the nineteenth century.
Carnivals and Galas that took place in West Lancashire, as the nineteenth century drew to its close, have been meticulously researched together with details of all the accompanying Morris dancing activity. Selected newspaper reportage from the time, giving a unique perspective on the lives of the ordinary people, is used to paint an amazing picture of the communities of the region as a whole.
Here we have Morris dancing teams that travelled distances to perform in towns beyond the county limits, teams that couldn’t afford to move about and stayed near home. Morris dancers who were influenced by the dancing of other teams or who started up in a town or village following a visit from dancers of another town. Benefactors who invested in their local team. Its all here.
A unique and valuable source of reference, this book brings together a wealth of fascinating information for the serious researcher and casual reader alike.
Johnny Haslett has published 3 volumes of Morris Dancers and Rose Queens; Volume 4 will be out soon.
Johnny Haslett has been involved in North West Morris dancing for many more years than he now cares to remember. Living in Leyland, in central Lancashire, not only was it virtually inevitable that he should spend much of his working life at Leyland Motors, but it was an almost equally natural sequence of events that led to him becoming a member of the Leyland Morris Men.
Swept along by the enthusiastic tide of new teams in the late seventies, he later joined the revived Preston Royal Morris Dancers and subsequently became their leader.
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