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King Alfred Statue c1955, Winchester

King Alfred Statue c1955, Winchester

King Alfred Statue c1955, Winchester Ref: W107051

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Morris Dancing in The Streets at The Winchester MayFest

Buttercross 1886, Winchester
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On Friday 15th & Saturday 16th May 2009, Winchester celebrated traditional and contemporary music, dance and song in venues all around the city.

Many events featured Morris Dancing and took place in the High Street, the Square, on the Cathedral Green and inevitably in some of Winchester’s favourite watering holes including the Eclipse Inn.

The weather was a little unkind early on the Saturday for those of us playing music and dancing by the Butter Cross shown in this view of the High Street. Although the day remained windy, the sun did come out and in next to no time very large crowds gathered round to watch the displays of dancing. I went along with my piano accordian to help provide music for the Whitethorn Morris dancers from Harrow. The eight dancers looked spectacular in their scarlet and blue kit plus shiny black clogs. At the end of each dance done to a jaunty jig or pulsating polka tune there was a good round of applause from... Read more

Whitethorn Morris at The Winchester MayFest 08

High Street 1896, Winchester
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May 2008, and the city of Winchester hosted a festival of music and dance, with the streets closed to traffic and thronged with entertainers, market stalls and happy crowds.

I was part of the band playing for Whitethorn Morris at this event and enjoyed my visit to Winchester. As I walked from the station I passed by the clock in the High Street shown in this Francis Frith view of 1896. Its still there and exactly the same!

My wife Elizabeth danced, and I played my piano accordian for most of the day, including a long procession of all the entertainers from the Cathedral Green and up the High Street.  It was a really happy and fun day out and a pleasure to entertain so many people in the crowded streets.

Hampshire Chronicle

I started work at the Hampshire Chronicle offices in the High Street as a cub reporter in the early 1960's under the benign eye of Monica Woodhouse and news editor 'Jock' Coutts. It was a great place to be - we reported on every court from magistrates to assizes, every council from parish to county, we did passing-out parades at the Green Jackets barrracks. Winchester has a cathedral, a public school, a prison ... all human life is there! I was truly 'educated' at Winchester and it was in the city that I met the girl who became my wife. The Chronicle in those days was still produced using a 'hot metal' process, little changed from Caxton's day (as were most papers at the time). In one lifetime we've gone from Caxton to computers ... and the old Chronicle offices are now probably an olde worlde tea shoppe. Time passes so quickly ...


Considering I spent 5 years as a day boy at Peter Symonds' my memories are scant to say the least, probably the most significant was the Annual Founders Day service at the Cathedral, the covered passage from the High Street past the school outfitters by the Cross and into the precinct of the Cathedral, the majestic city hall building further down. At the station a long walk up the hill to school, the bakers shop just round from the school gates which the head put out of bounds, sad as I find it, that, apart from school related memories, is it.

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