Morris dancers raise hundreds for charity

Words and photo by Dave Barry 

Besides providing traditional terpsichorean entertainment, Scarborough’s Yorkshire Coast Morris dancers raise money for worthy causes.

Wearing their familiar blue and white tunics, and brandishing sticks and handkerchiefs, they dance outdoors, mainly through the summer months.

The team’s season starts in May as the days lengthen and warm up. Members usually perform at pubs or on the seafront on Thursday evenings, choosing a different venue each week. And they dance at local fairs such as Scalby Fair.

They invite other sides to Scarborough for a weekend of dance in June, dancing in both bays and at the castle. This year it will be on 22 and 23 June.

The squad’s squire, Julia Thompson, says: “The weekend is our biggest money-raising opportunity.

“We dance out in the colder months for certain events such as the annual Victorian weekend in Robin Hoods Bay”, Julia says.

“We collect money for local charities and at Christmas we vote which ones we will help”.

Last year, the dancers collected £400 which was shared evenly between Scarborough RNLI's Andrew McGeown Legacy Fund and the Rainbow Centre.

Cheques were presented at the Sea Cadets Hall in East Sandgate, where the dancers practise.

The fund was represented by Donna and Simon Loveland and the Rainbow Centre by Trish Kinsella.