Folk Association of South Hants



Looking forward to dancing "live" in October 2021

We are planning workshops for 2021/2022 and very much hope that by then we shall all feel able to venture out and dance together again. We hope to hold the AGM during the lunch break of the October workshop.

If you are not already on our FASH Supporters circulation list and would like to receive news of our workshops, please contact Daphne on or phone 01243 531497.

Please see the Workshops page for information about past Zoom events and workshops that have been postponed.

For details of local dance events currently being held on Zoom please see our Dance Diary and for information about what is happening in Folk Clubs and Arts Centres please see the recently updated Folk Club Diary. There is more information below about other Folk events being held on Zoom at the moment.

Nigel Close has restarted his series "as many as will" as a Zoom meeting on the first Thursday of every month. They are proving to be very popular and if you would also like to join in, please email Nigel on to obtain the link. The next session is at 7.30pm on the 6th May - doors open at 7.15pm.


And yet more dance... FolkActive, who have been running their Wednesday dances with live music for the over 50s for some time, moved this monthly event on-line last June. Now they have funding from Hampshire and Isle of Wight Community Fund (HIWCF) and the Wessex Community Bank which will allow them to run these sessions twice a month at least until the end of July. You need to register and you can easily access a form via this link. For more information see FolkActive's page here.


If you prefer contra-style dances, have a look also at The London Barndance Company's website. The home page tells you how to join the discussion list, from which you can get the necessary details for joining the virtual dances. We have added detals into the Dance Diary.


You might also be interested in a series of dances that take place on Sunday evenings. Look at this website and click on "See more" in the "About this group" box. It will tell you a bit about it; remember that this is not UK-based, so the actual times are 9.00 to 10.30. Apparently there are over 300 members of the group and 150-ish regularly sign into the sessions. Click on the "Join Group" button to receive an invitation e-mail.


"The first green shoots" of folk dance are at last showing: Jan Harris' club in Highcliffe is restarting on the 8th July, and will run weekly though the summer and into autumn. Waterlooville have their programme ready for autumn; the first dance is on 6th September - note that they have moved to a different room in the Community Centre. In the Isle of Wight, a quick poll of the club's dancers indicates that many of them are ready to restart as soon as it is legal to do so, even if intially it is only "garden dancing", and the several groups of Scottish dancers in our area are are just waiting for the "green light". We still have not heard about the dance festivals/weekends in the summer and autumn, but hopefully we should soon. Do please keep your editor informed when your club restarts after the pandemic.


You cannot keep a good sailor down below, and you can now listen to Shep Woolley 'on-line'. Thursday evenings 7.00 to 8.00 he has a Folk session on Victory on-line, repeated on Sunday at 4.00. Click on the "Pop-up Player" words to listen. For early risers, he has a session on Angel Radio at 5.35 on Thursdays that he calls "Shep Woolley's Suitcase". From the home page click on "Find us ONLINE" or use DAB radio (the FM transmissions do not seem to cover much of Hampshire - or maybe my aerial is pointing the wrong way).


The English Folk Dance and Song Society, EFDSS, has its full programme on-line now. Many song and dance workshops are included. See and go to their 'What's on' page, or use this link to find out what is taking place in the coming months and to book tickets.


Things are becoming a little clearer on public gatherings, including folk festivals, so we are now updating our 'Festivals' page as information becomes available. We understand that several of our most local festivals are going ahead: Wickham Festival, Purbeck Valley Folk Festival, Swanage Folk Festival, Southdowns FolkFestival and New Forest Folk Festival. After such a long period of 'festival abstinence', tickets are likely to go fast, so get onto the websites (our 'Festivals' page has all the links) soon. Sadly, it appears that few of the festival organisers anticipate running any dances or dance workshops.


We are delighted to hear that Forest Folk are starting a series of Zoom sessions. The first was on Monday 1st March, which they described as a 'Meet and Greet'. There will be another on May 3rd (even though it is a bank holiday) and, we assume also on June 7th. If you would like to know more, drop Janet or Charles a line on Note that their 'Virtual singaround' is still on their Facebook page.


We have added 'Friends of Cecil Sharp House' to our Links page. This organisation promotes the participation in English Folk Dance and Music, and at the moment is running a series of on-line, or virtual, dance and calling workshops. At the end of August it held a Zoom discussion between Colin Hume, Louise Siddons and Bernie Culkin in which they addressed the problem of reducing numbers at so many of our folk dance clubs. Colin has suggested a rather radical way of approaching this, and leads the discussion. You can see the recording of it at but be prepared - it is a long session (nearly an hour and 35 minutes) although you can safely skip the first 5 minutes.


Antipating the time when "Covid-safe" halls can reopen, Wessex Acoustic are expecting to present Jez Lowe in Concert on the 21st May. This event will take place in the St Peter's Church, High Street, Shaftesbury. See their website for full details; note that although the bar will not be selling alcohol, the licensing requirements mean that you cannot take your own alcohol along. To save booking fees, phone Kathy on 01202 732239 or John on 01747 850212 to order tickets. Information on several other clubs planning to open in May and June is on our Diary page. Some have concerts planned through to Christmas 2022.


You are unlikely to have been able to watch a traditional Mummers Play this year with the present Covid-19 restirctions in place, so King John's Morris Men put together a 'virtual' Mummers Play compiled from a series of clips filmed by each of the participants - a very clever bit of video editing with several little snippets of humour you would not get outside a pub. It is well worth watching, and if you would normally have contributed to their charity at a live performance, there is the opportunity to donate via the "Just Giving" website. Go to to see the play, to listen to and watch a Christmas carol they have recorded, and for a link to the donations site.

Not actually mentioned on their website, King John's Morris Men have also produced a CD of music and songs, typical of their repertoire on their regular (until February this year) 'Music nights'. It is called 'Pigsticking', with 21 tracks and priced at £6 including postage etc.; if you would like a copy, drop John Connell a line on to find out what you need to do.


The Guildford Institute is presumably yet to open. However, the Music Institute has established a regular "Come All Ye Open Zoom" meeting which was limited to 18 participants/audience, but now is open to a larger audience. See their website for a link to send an email saying you would like to attend. Note that their "singers list" fills up quickly, so contact them early if you would like to contribute a song or poem etc. If you would like to contribute to St Catherine's Hospice you can make your donation online at - the collection was approaching £1000 in December.

Courses are beginning again at Halsway Manor, near Crowcombe, Somerset and it is well worth looking at their website as there are a great many exciting courses listed and they are now taking bookings for events from May onwards.

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