Leyland Morris Men’s 50th celebration on April 29th 2017
Planning well ahead paid off! Everything came together (just) in time and the day was a great success.
A good number of past dancers (and musicians) either turned up at the morning dance spots or/and at the Cricket Club in the afternoon:-
Ken Holmes (who first appeared on a photo from 1946), Graham Mee, Mattie Richardson (Antrobus) & Mary Johnson (Norris) of the 1946-57 St James’, Moss Side, teams.
Ken Holmes (again) of the 1954-7 Leyland teams.
Barbara Hamer, Valerie Kite, Doris Reeve & Roy Smith of the Leyland Folk Dance Group team of 1965........
....and of the on-going revival team since 1967 Derrick Bannister, Eric Bowling, Mike Cowburn, Ken Dagger, Chas Fraser, David Garstang, Derek Gifford, Ken Holmes (yet again!), Malcolm Milner, Alan Moon, John McAlister, Jeff Warwick & Ernest Wrennall.
Several others sent apologies for absence including Alan Cowie, Brian Gregson, John Haslett, Bryan Holmes, Don Quick (from New Zealand) & George Rowe.
Then, of course, there were relatives of past dancers from long ago: David Lawrie (grandson of Jack McKittrick, who was Team Leader 1910-14); David Southworth (son of Jimmy Southworth); Ken Lazenby (son of Percy Lazenby) and Brian Fairhurst (married to a relative of Jimmy Grant – Leader in the 1920s & ‘30s and an instructor for the St James’ team, the 1950s Leyland team and the current revival team in its early days).
The day started with us dancing in Leyland. From the market we moved onto Hough Lane and then the Parish church for their coffee morning. The museum and library followed before we adjourned to the cricket club for a well earned pint.
Current team members and their families ensured that we had a good, lively time and a busy afternoon. [The main concern with any event like this is whether anyone will turn up!]
It was good to have the Mayor (Linda Woollard)& 2 local Councillors (Jane Bell and Mal Donohue) there as well. In addition to formally opening the afternoon’s proceedings the Mayor also presented Roy Smith with an engraved silver letter opener. This gift from the team was to mark Roy’s continuous dancing with the team for all of the 50 years that the present team had accomplished. Ken Holmes, Ernest Wrennall, previously mentioned, and Mike Bailey, currently team secretary, were the only other members present on the day who had danced out on April 29th 1967.
Duncan Broomhead of the Morris Ring came along and Derek Schofield (ex-Manley MD) sent his apologies. It was a great pity no other Morris Ring officers were able to put in an appearance.
There was much interest in the photo displays, the books of archive photos (all the way back to 1890) and the team scrapbooks since 1967 plus other items of memorabilia.
Several of the individual waistcoats we used to wear in the late ‘60s/early‘70s came from Bruce Dowles, RoySmith & Derrick Bannister and Malcolm Milner actually turned up wearing his (he could still get into it!) – as well as proudly wearing his LMM tie.
Let us hope the tradition carries on for more years to come.
Updated 23:24 - 15 May 2017 by David Rowland