‘Ancient Men’ morris dancers tour North Somerset, 24th-29th July

Ancient Men on tour in Fairford, Gloucestershire, in 2002

Our touring alter-egos the Ancient Men are delighted to be visiting North Somerset this Summer.

We have toured in Somerset twice before – first in 1965, and more recently in 1979.

We look forward to experiencing the dramatic scenery of the Mendip hills, absorbing the mystical atmosphere of ancient monuments, visiting the many historic towns and villages – and of course, appreciating the local cider.

Wye Symonds Yat 1
Ancient Men at Symonds Yat during the 2016 Wye Valley tour

From our base near Wrington, our tour takes us from Wells and Glastonbury in the South, to the cities of Bristol and Bath in the North. And at the end of a busy and strenuous day, don’t be surprised to see us retiring to the nearest pub for a well-earned drink and a musical session. You are very welcome to join us!

There’s also a facebook event for the tour here, which you are welcome to join, and to share with anyone who may be interested.

Itinerary of Public Performances

Monday 24 July

11:30 Rodney Stoke Inn, Rodney Stoke
12:30 Riverside Inn, Cheddar
13:30 White Hart, Cheddar
18:30 Lamb Inn, Axbridge
19:30 New Inn, Cross
20:30 Railway Inn, Sandford

Tuesday 25 July

12:00 Jubilee Inn, Flax Bourton
13:00 Black Horse, Clapton in Gordano
18:15 Moon and Sixpence, Clevedon
19:30 Railway Inn, Yatton
20:30 White Hart, Wrington

Wednesday 26 July

11:30 Wookey Hole Inn, Wookey (TBC)
12:30 Full Moon, Wells
13:30 Wells Marketplace
18:30 Churchill Inn, Churchill
19:30 Plume of Feathers, Rickford
20:30 Plough Inn, Wrington

Thursday 27 July

12:20 Bathampton Mill, Bathampton
14:15 Bath (Kingston Parade)
17:00 Bath (Terrace Walk)
18:30 Compton Inn, Compton Dando
20:30 Prince of Waterloo, Winford

Friday 28 July

11:00 Swan Inn, Wedmore
12:30 Glastonbury Marketplace
13:30 King Arthur, Glastonbury
18:00 Sheppey Inn, Godney
19:15 Queen Victoria, Priddy
20:30 Swan Inn, Rowberrow

Saturday 29 July

12:30 The Apple (cider boat), Bristol
Afternoon: harbourside area
17:30 The Ashton, Long Ashton
18:30 Fox & Goose, Barrow Gurney
19:30 New Inn, Blagdon

OUMM at Folk Weekend Oxford

Impromptu music in the King's Arms
Impromptu music in the King’s Arms, featuring rubber-chicken-as-musical-instrument.

Folk Weekend Oxford usually marks the unofficial beginning of our dancing out season, coming a week or two before our official start on May Morning.

This year we were scheduled to dance on the Saturday, with stands on Broad Street at 10am (alongside Mr Wilkins’ Shilling and the very impressive Winchester Morris), and outside the Pitt Rivers at 12:30pm (with Whitethorn Morris and our local friends Cry Havoc) – and we even managed to fit in a sneaky music session in the King’s Arms in between.

One of our fans* has taken some very nice high-quality video of our performances at Folk Weekend. The 1080p-60fps setting really does us justice.

(It also gives the Squire plenty of opportunity to see who needs extra practice!)

*press-ganged morris partner

Happy 90th Birthday OUMM!

On 17th October 1926, Oxford University Men’s Morris (OUMM) was officially established as a self-governing body. Immediately prior to this, much of the Morris in Oxford University seems to have been centred around the Oxford Branch of the English Folk Dance Society (EFDS). For more detail, delve in to “OUMM and its background.” by Roy Judge.

We celebrated the side’s founding at our 90th Anniversary Feast on the 25th of November 2016.

Below are some historical photographs from the OUMM archives, taken in 1926.

This photo is dated 2 June 1926.
This photo is dated 2 June 1926.
Dated 'Easter 1926', (early April), GTF is Geoffrey Fiennes.
Dated ‘Easter 1926’, (early April), GTF is Geoffrey Fiennes.
Geoffrey Feinnes reported this event in his diary: "8 May – The Heather Festival. This took place on the 5th day of the General Strike and it was very difficult to keep the Morris Men together while so many of their friends had gone off to do emergency jobs."
Geoffrey Feinnes reported this event in his diary: “8 May – The Heather Festival. This took place on the 5th day of the General Strike and it was very difficult to keep the Morris Men together while so many of their friends had gone off to do emergency jobs.”

OUMM Star in ‘Stealing Sheep’ Music Video

Over the Summer, dancers from OUMM, Oxford City Morris Men, and Abingdon Traditional Morris Dancers filmed a music video with Stealing Sheep for their new song ‘Apparition’.

Here is the finished video – complete with hitherto unknown feats of athleticism by certain chaps…