Cogs & Wheels Ladies Morris
Cogs & Wheels Ladies Morris were formed in 1995 from a germ of an idea spawned by a group of volunteers at Finch Foundry. Initial practice among the original team of 10 took place in the upstairs room at the Foundry, but the side soon outgrew that space – we now boast 23 dancers and 5 musicians We eventually moved our practice sessions to its current location at Victory Hall, South Zeal.
We take our inspiration from the Foundry and the surrounding Dartmoor landscape. Our costumes reflect the hues of the moor, and our style of dancing is quite distinctive. We perform a wide variety of dances from several traditions — mostly Cotswold, with some Border and some our own. The traditions of Morris have survived many centuries, having been rediscovered by Cecil Sharp at the turn of the last Century.
It has been a tradition of Morris dancing to pass the hat around the audience. Once it was an opportunity for people to thank the dancers for driving away evil spirits; now it helps with expenses such as Federation membership and the enormous hanky-laundering bill. We also make regular donations to charities.
We don’t like to take ourselves too seriously – our aim is to have fun while enjoying some great dancing – but we like to put on a good display of dancing when performing. We practice hard to achieve this – our practice season runs from October to April, and we dance out from May to early September. Cogs and Wheels meet every Thursday. We always welcome new members – you don’t have to have had any experience – and the best time to start is early in our practice season. We are also keen to attract musicians to join us.
If you are interested in knowing more about Cogs and Wheels, please speak to our Bagperson (Secretary) Alexa on 01647 277498, or catch up with any of our Sticklepath members – Alison Cruse, Jenny Bowkley, Libby, Watson, Kathy Matthews and Yvonne Reason.
Further information can be found on our website www.cogsandwheels.co.uk