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It was with great pleasure that we joined the World Famous Hammersmith Morris Men from W6 for their Walking Tour of Lewes. They certainly know how to organise things, even down to the glorious weather that we enjoyed all day.
All the participating sides congregated at The Dorset pub, conveniently located near one of the main car parks. We were joined by
All the sides took turns to dance on the excellent large patio area at the front of the pub. Kettle Bridge performed Prescot (specially rechoreographed for the occasion) and KBC Processional.
Then it was time for the tour to begin so the sides split into two groups to dance at various locations in the town. We made our way to the John Harvey Tavern together with Brighton and Hammersmith. I have done some research into the origins of the name of the pub and found 28 people in Wikipedia with the name John Harvey. These include a British crime writer, a 16th Century astrologer, a US navy admiral and the former British Conservative MP for Walthamstow East. I can exclusively reveal though that the pub is actually named after the manager of Heart of Midlothian Football Club from 1966 to 1970. Very strange, because I would have thought that it would have been named after the founder of Harveys Brewery.
Important Note : Before I get complaints, apparently Harveys Brewery does not use an apostrophe in its name except in their newly designed pump badge.
After an excellent stand featuring Lostock, Aughton, Colne and Prescot (original version), we were ready for our lunch break. I personally had a bacon and brie sandwich at the pub, which I can thoroughly recommend (both the pub and the sandwich).
Suitably refreshed, we took the 5 second journey to the next stand which was in the same place. This time however we enjoyed the company of Rampant Rooster and Hammersmith and performed a well-received set of St. Helens, Lostock and Annie's.
We actually had to move for the next stand - very shabby treatment for the Grannies in Bloomers as Hammersmith refer (affectionately) to Kettle Bridge. What they don't know is that the band have to wear bloomers as well as we have a very strict dress code.
And so we found ourselves in the High Street which turned out to be a bit cramped as we had to dance on the narrow pavement and there was a steady stream of traffic trying to pass. Undaunted, Kettle Bridge put on a good show with Milnrow, Colne and Aughton, rotating with Hammersmith, Brighton and Cuckoo's Nest (complete with apostrophe!).
The final stand was a return to The Dorset where we were joined by a special guest side, the Commercial Square Bonfire Society. What commercial use there can be for square bonfires escapes me but they were a delight to watch. You can see them (and KBC) in action here.
We reprised Milnrow and Colne and finished off with a rousing performance of Cossington.
And that brought proceedings to a close. A really excellent, thoroughly enjoyable day. Thanks must go to Hammersmith for inviting us and a special mention for the band who did a sterling job despite being rather depleted.
There is a rumour circulating that the Smiffs are forming their own morris organisation called the Anarchic Morris Activists Society or AMAS, for short. They particularly like the acronym as it is Latin for "you love". But remember that it is just a rumour and may turn out to be an AMAS myth.