2013 - December
One of the highlights of the year for the band is to play at the annual Crook Morris Christmas Ceilidh in the Kendal Parish Hall. This year we were invited to play for the sixth year running, and everyone had another great evening. As with previous years the band had a horn section, this year consisting of trombone, alto sax, and tenor sax - what a fabulous sound. The band as usual started the evening with a song, this year choosing one written by Jon Harvison from Keighley called Turning of the Year.
There were many favorable comments on the evening including these two -
It was brilliant….. I loved everything, but especially when the brass section joined in on the music. However on reflection the Morris themselves were fantastic, best I’ve seen yet and the Revellers had just the right mix of songs.  Tumbling Tom, of course, are still the best ceilidh band around.

I liked: Plenty of room to dance: Intervals for song and dance spots made the night extra special: Excellent ceilidh dances chosen for variety and “doability”: Dancing to festive tunes: The friendliness of Crook Morris.

The other ceilidh this month was for Outdoor Education undergraduates at the University of Cumbria in Ambleside. A lively evening and great fun. Thank to Joseph and his team.

2013 - August
August is traditionally the bands month off, taking the opportunity to have holidays and visit festivals. This year included band members visiting music festivals St Chartier in France, Sidmouth, Whitby, Shrewsbury, and WOMAD.
At the end of the month, we drove into the lovely Rusland Valley to play at the 60th birthday party of John Taylor. This was held in the Quaker meeting house at Rookhow, and despite the rather cramped playing area gave a lovely atmospheric evening. Below left shows Fiona guiding the lively dancers through the dance movements, and below right the band in relaxed mood in their restricted stage area.

2013 - July
The month was in the middle of a heat wave, with wall-to-wall sunshine, making for perfect weather when Bill and Jenny were married. Based at the Swan Hotel in Newby Bridge, the evening ceilidh was the first outing for Hilary playing soprano sax and clarinet with us. We also had Mark on bass, giving a different sound to our more usual line-up.

Below left are Bill and Jenny opening the evening by dancing to a Frank Sinatra track, and below right a view of the band with the dancing underway.

2013 - June
As mid summer approached, our first gig in June was at a new venue for us, Capernwray Hall near Carnforth, for the wedding of Esther and Paul. A beautiful setting and building, the ceilidh in the sports hall gave plenty of space for the dancers to spread out.

The photo below left shows the happy couple, and below right the dancing underway.

Our second ceilidh of the month was a return visit to Hest Bank to help with their mid-summer Field Day. Despite the generally rainy day, there was a gap in the weather to enable afternoon activities to take place. As in previous years, the ceilidh in the evening was a great success, with lots of enthusiasm and a wide range of ages. Thanks to Jo and her team for another enjoyable evening.

2013 - May
We play at many weddings, and its always a privilege to share in other peoples special day and help make it it memorable. Elizabeth and Richard came to one of our ceilidhs last year to 'vet' us, and were suitably impressed enough to book us for their wedding at the Burnside Hotel in Bowness. A lovely occasion and a great crowd.
Here they are cutting the cake before the dancing started, and leading a set in 'stripping the willow'.
2013 - April
The Castle Green Hotel in Kendal is a venue that we play quite regularly, and this time it was for the wedding of Catriona and Tristan. A very enthusiastic group of people made for a very enjoyable ceilidh all round, with the dance floor full all evening.
The band always look forward to the music and walking weekend that they organise at High House in Borrowdale. This is the time that they invite lots of their musical friends to share the weekend with them in playing, singing, and walking. The weekend was made extra special as the Saturday was also Phil's 60th birthday. Below right shows him tuning his hammer dulcimer.

2013 - March
March 2nd saw the band travel over to Askrigg near Hawes in Wensleydale for the realisation of their Dales Project with Bob Ellis. This involved using field recordings made in the 1950's and early 1970's by Peter Kennedy and Mike Yates to reconstruct the dances of those times and dance them to the tunes played on the recordings. A special feature was to import some of the recordings into a computer to enable the band to play along with the likes of Harry Cockerill, Kit White, and Peter & George Beresford, and for the dancers to dance to the music.
The evening was featured in an article in the Darlington and Stockton Times, and this gives a good idea of the project.
To start the evening, Bob Ellis and Eleanor Scarr read the transcription of a recording between Peter Kennedy and the concertina player Sam Fawcett, and then Bob introduced the evening and the band.

About 95 people attended the dance, and it was both a privilege and great fun for the band to be involved in the project. Judging from the comments of the dancers afterwards they thoroughly enjoyed this unique evening. Thanks to Bob and Eleanor for making us so welcome.

Bob commented later - Thanks again for providing such a superb evening. I have had a lot of very positive feedback about the evening as a whole and the quality of the music and dance calling in particular.

All evening, the dance floor was full of dancers of all ages.

At the start of the second half, Bob Ellis was thanked for all his hard work in bringing this project to fruition by Sue Foster (right), chair of the Friends of the Dales Countryside Museum, with Eleanor Scarr on the left.

Eleanor Scarr read more amusing memories and anecdotes before the dancing started in the second half.
Fiona walking the dancers through a dance before the music starts.
One of the reconstructed dances, Kendal Ghyll, danced to a version of the tune Kendal Ghyll collected from John and Dick Wallbank from New Houses near Horton-in-Ribblesdale.
The band playing Bill Halls Quicksteps for a schottische
Last year we played at Arnside for the Choral Society, and they enjoyed it that much that they invited us back again. Thanks to Gillian and her team for a good evening.
The third booking in the month took the band over to Monk Coniston for a return booking at a Yoga week. The evening was a great success last year, and this year was no exception. Thanks to Phillip for booking us again this year, and we're looking forward to celebrating their 25th year at Monk Coniston next year.


Our fourth booking of the month saw the band travelling to Kirkby Lonsdale for Joanne's special birthday. The Institute was a new venue for the band, and it turned out to be an excellent choice. Thanks to Joanne for making us so welcome, and happy birthday again!

Joanne e-mailed afterwards - Everyone had such a great time and loads of people have commented on how good they thought you were. It was so lovely that the children were able to join in too. I've recommended you to the Institute bookings manager and she said she would do the same to people who book the hall. We're already talking about having another one next year.
Thanks for a great night


2013 - February -
Helen and John Whittaker have been good friends of the band for many years. So many that we played for Helen and Andy's (her twin brother) 40th birthday in 1993, and John's (Helen's husband) 50th in 1999. This time it was for Helen and Andy's 60th birthday, and what a lovely evening it was with so many old friends to catch up with. The dance was held in St Thomas' church in Kendal, and what a great venue it was. Thanks to Helen and Andy, and role on the 70th birthday (but not too quickly!)

Here are Andy and Helen thanking all the guests for coming.
The dance floor warming up nicely, with large screens at either side of the stage area showing photos from their lives to date
The band
Dancing the Dashing White Sergeant.
2013 - January -
With the Christmas and new year celebrations over, the band looked forward to another busy year ahead with twelve booking already on the list. The first of these was a return to the Belsfield Hotel in Bowness to play at a head teachers conference, having first played for them in 2009. A great evening with the dancers full of enthusiasm. Thanks to Catherine for asking us again, and can we please play again!
Les walking the dancers through the movements
Dancing the figures
The Dales Music project that the band have been involved with is now taking shape and tickets are available. The article below appeared in the Upper Wensleydale Newsletter -
Traditional Village Dance in Askrigg
The Friends of the Dales Countryside Museum are organising a traditional village dance in Askrigg Village Hall on Saturday 2nd March from 8.00 to 11.00p.m. This event will be a celebration of the village dances that were common in Wensleydale and the surrounding dales during the nineteenth century and the first half of the twentieth. Dances that were once popular locally, such as Meeting Six, Buttered Peas and Huntsman’s Chorus, will be explained by callers Fiona Rigg and Les Robinson and then danced to the music of Tumbling Tom, a highly respected folk dance band from the Kendal area. Modern technology will be used to enable Tumbling Tom to play along with recordings made a lifetime ago of traditional dance musicians such as Harry Cockerill from Askrigg, Kit White from
Swaledale and the Beresford family from Langstrothdale. Between dances Eleanor Scarr will provide some light-hearted anecdotes about dances from the past.
Refreshments are included in the price of the tickets and a bar will be provided. Tickets cost £10.00 and are available from Dales Countryside Museum in Hawes, Eleanor Scarr in Askrigg (650216), Bob Ellis in Gayle (666074) and Sue Foster in Hardraw (667424).






















Tumbling Tom Band 'the ceilidh roots dance band for people out there'

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Band Blog - 2013



























































































































































































































































































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