The Kemps Men at the Lord Nelson Public House Reedham
The Lord Nelson
Real Ale, Good Food & Live Music in Reedham on the Norfolk Broads
The English Morris is believed, probably wrongly, to be based on pre-Christian ritual,
in fact its origins are unknown. By the end of the 19th century, Morris was dying,
and mainly restricted to a handful of Cotswold villages. The remaining dances were
rescued from extinction by a number of collectors (notably Cecil Sharp) and a revival
Today hundreds of Morris sides dance Cotswold Morris and many more perform other
forms of traditional English dances. In the North-East there are sword dances: rapper
(with flexible swords or rappers) and longsword (rhythmic and elegant).
The North-West has Clog Morris, whilst around the Welsh borders is Border Morris
(a very vigorous form) and in the fens the Molly dances appear mainly during the
winter. Other variants occur in different regions of the UK, such as Norfolk where
a solo step dance is traditional. Kemp's Men have invented their own tradition of
Norwich upon Wensum, largely based on the Norfolk Longdance, and reflecting many
Norfolk traditions, events or places.