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Life With Bells On

A look at old English traditions through the lens of Morris dancers

Airing time: Your choice, on-demand

New Plymouth's Phoenix Morris dancers look at English folk customs, matching them up with the time of the year they are celebrated and the places that celebrate them.  In each episode co-host, Peter Galvin, performs music from the part of England being featured in the show.



Click on the title of an episode to listen

Somerset in Autumn

Duration: 00:35:47 | Date: 24 October, 2012

Michaelmas, Old Man's Day

Janet Tells why Michaelmas Day was so important and about the 'sport' of goose riding. Also around the same time, The Lord Mayor is elected - Old Man's Day

Duration: 00:25:23 | Date: 10 October, 2012

Folk Traditions - Mid-September

Peter Galvin talks about some of the folk traditions celebrated in mid-September, such as the Devil's Nutting Day

Duration: 00:24:16 | Date: 26 September, 2012

Harvest Customs

Ruth talks about the importance of the harvest and some of the traditions related to the autumn season

Duration: 00:32:25 | Date: 5 September, 2012

Feasts and Bank Holidays

The Feast of St Peter happens in late August, and Ruth explains why public holidays in England are called Bank Holidays

Duration: 00:35:33 | Date: 22 August, 2012

Early August

The Grottos start in early August. What are the Grottos and why should they be remembered? Ruth looks at this question, among other things relating to early August, such as the Arden Grand Wardmote.

Duration: 00:31:31 | Date: 15 August, 2012

Late July Traditions

Ruth Morrison looks at some of the saints' days in late July, such as St Margaret and St Christopher

Duration: 00:31:55 | Date: 8 August, 2012

Feast Days and Galas of July

Today's host, Ruth Morrison, talks about some of the feasts, fetes, fairs, wakes (many different names) that are important in English summers, such as Rushbearing ceremonies, rose queen festivals, saints feast days, and the Durham gala.

Duration: 00:23:08 | Date: 18 July, 2012


While NZ Morris dancers are celebrating the winter solstice, in England it's the time of the summer solstice.

Duration: 00:29:10 | Date: 4 July, 2012

June Traditions

Guest host, Paul, talks about how the old ways were brought into the church calendar and looks at some of those June traditions including Whitsun holiday and the summer solstice.

Duration: 00:32:09 | Date: 20 June, 2012

May Festivals

Guest, Rhonda, talks about some of the festivals celebrated in May, including the Furry Dance from Helston, Cornwall.

Duration: 00:35:32 | Date: 30 May, 2012

May Day

May Day is an important day in the Morris Dancers' calendar. Host, Janet Fleury, explains why and talks about the origins of Morris dancing.

Duration: 00:30:38 | Date: 16 May, 2012