If you would like to support the morris we should be delighted to hear from you.
Please contact the Bagman:
Ken Humphries 01483 420788
This year we have joint squires:
Mr Ross Kilsby and Mr Steve Harding
Mitch Mitchell is our dancing foreman
CUPHILL AT THE RED LION GODALMING
See how these good old boys are able to spring in the air with all the vigour of youth! Morris dancing really is good for you and keeps you young at heart
MORRIS DANCING ON BICYCLES
Cuphill Morris are renowned for their versatility. Adaptable to all situations here we are seen in 2002 about to embark on our summer cycle tour. In the background can be seen the Anchor public house. This is our traditional venue for dancing on boxing day when there is also a performance by the mummers of their Yuletide play.
No doubt you will want to know more about the history and achievements of this fine old English country dance team.
Cuphill Morris dance mainly in the Cotswold style with dances in the traditions of the country villages that Cecil Sharp pedalled out to from Oxford early in the 20th century to make the written records that are the basis for the dances we do today. Believed once to be a common activity in rural communities throughout the land morris dancing declined in popularity with the urbanisation of the industrial revolution. A revival of interest occurred in the 1970s but alas this revival is reaching its zenith and interest by the young has reached an all-time low. As the numbers in our team fall we find it more and more difficult to field a team for specific events.
Since pre-historic times there must have been some form of ritual dance. However, the Morris as seen now has its origins in the Moors of North Africa traveling via Spain, coming to England during the reign of Edward III (1327 – 1377), soon to be incorporated into the fabric of England’s traditions. Nevertheless it was by pure luck that we have them at all, for with the industrialization of this land during the 19C vast numbers of agricultural workers, those who danced the traditional dances such as the Morris, moved to work in the factories and on the railways. By the last years of Queen Victoria’s reign onl;y a handful of teams existed.
Then came the happy accident: On Boxing Day 1899, whilst staying at Headington near Oxford, a man by the nake of Cecil Sharp saw the Headington Quarry Morris Men which set within him a passion for traditional dances and music. The interest grew with him touring the villages to collect the songs and dances before they could be lost forever. His work led to the eventual founding of the English Folk Dance Society in 1911 which with the addition of song became the EFDSS that is still in existence. In 1934 a number of Morris teams, both old survivors and the new revival teams banded together to form the Morris Ring of England which exists to this day to promote the Morris. With the swinging sixties folk music blossomed anew leading to the formation of many of the Morris sides or teams who are still with us, amongst them Cuphill, founded in 1969.