Archer, Dancer, Guise Performer and Musician

Archer

For a few years I was a re-enactor at the Battle of Camlann Tintagel. I participated in longbow archery displays wearing medieval costume and fought in battles.

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Battle

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Battle of Camlann 2004. – Tintagel Web
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With my former husband and son at the Battle of Camlann 2005. Tintagel Web

I was also a member of: Wolfshead Bowmen performing archery displays at Castle Cary in Devon. They practiced at Michelham Priory Sussex and attended the magnificent festival at Herstmonceux. The most memorable shot was through a small hole in a shield wall at ground level. The arrow slid between the legs of a kneeling soldier wearing a kilt!

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Michaelham Priory Sussex
Musician

I have been a member of the: Golowan Band since 2015 after teaching myself to play the melodeon from February 2012 with advice from Mike Rowbotham.  Accompanying experienced musicians has been a challenge but greatly improved my ability. I also play a folk drum within processions.

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St Pirans Day Penzance

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Murdoch Day Redruth – by James Kitto
Dancer

Dancing has been a life-long passion. From infancy I attempted to imitate dancers seen on television performances and as the years progressed I learnt ballet. In my 20s I toured nightclubs as part of a dance troupe and was also a podium dancer. I received dancing tuition from Len Goodman at his studio (Len later became a renowned Judge on the television show Strictly Come Dancing.)

From 1999 I became a Morris dancer. I also attended belly dancing classes and in recent years have learnt Cornish dancing in Cornwall.

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Whitby 2001
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Sweeps Festival 2002
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Sweeps Festival 2002 – Their feet didn’t touch the ground!

See: video footage of Wolfshead and Vixen dancing at The Swan in West Peckham 2002. My son was only 10 years of age and maintained a good rhythm on the drum while I danced with Vixen.

The following videos are not good quality but they show how hard the team worked at performance and how fabulous the dances are.

Guise Performer

A few months after moving to Cornwall I was contacted by an acquaintance who asked if I would be interested in becoming an apprentice Teazer for the Penzance Obby ‘Oss Penglaz.  Through this I met Cassandra who accepted me for this role when she heard of my past membership with a reputable Morris team and martial arts training that requires a high level of fitness. After a few practices, Cassandra decided the best way for me to learn was to perform alongside her on the streets of Penzance. I did so as part of my Teazer training during 2009 and 2010.

Montol Festival 2009

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Mazey Eve 2009

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Mazey Eve 2009

Mazey Eve 2009

I also participated in the 2019 procession for the first May Horns celebration in Penzance.

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May Horns Penzance 2010 – by Peter Carter

When Cassandra and I were no longer required for the Golowan festival due to political disagreements (should you require further information go to the: Media Page). We created our own Guise team: Boekka and re-named Cassandra’s ‘Obby ‘Oss  Penkevyll. This enabled us to tour without restriction. Boekka has visited Scotland, Wales and Kent. I am now the main Teazer for Penkevyll.

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St Ives Festival 2012

Sweeps Festival 2011 – I. Elliott
St Pirans Day Redruth 2013

An experimental dance was devised by my talented son Rhys for Boekka’s Ceildih spot at Teignmouth folk festival 2013. Members of the band Muse attended this particular school, so dancing to their music was also a tribute to them. The sharp, fast moves were accurately performed by the dancers who were myself, Rhys, Megan and Denise. It was a joy to perform and all involved were exceptional.

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Wreckers Day of Dance Cawsand 2014 -John Attwood

I also danced with a Cornwall Morris side from 2014 to 2016.

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All Hallows Gathering Boscastle 2015
All Hallows Gathering Boscastle 2015 – Dougie Latham

Unfortunately the Cornwall Morris side did not provide the ‘dark and edgy’ performance I was accustomed to and there was a sudden decision by officers that all dancers were to change their kit to brightly coloured shirts. They had previously agreed I could wear a black shirt, so this was one reason I left. Although this may seem petty to some, there were also more serious reasons.

My first Morris side in Kent had a high standard of performance accompanied by a dark energy and were an inspiration for Beltane Morris. After the experience of performance with an exceptional Morris team, I could not settle for anything less. My time of Morris dancing completed a ‘full circle’ with a surprisingly wonderful occurrence at the All Hallows Dark Gathering. Read about it here: A Special All Hallows Dark Gathering 2018

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All Hallows Gathering Boscastle 2018 – Image Chris Neno

I now have the freedom of expression within my role as Teazer of Penkevyll which confirmed that Morris dancing is no longer an option for me.

Unfortunately when one leaves a Morris team there can be repercussions. Certain officers and members who contrive to appear faultless to others but seek revenge, can group together, seek out allies and create vile false rumours with the intention of destroying the reputation of a former member. The following links are related to this:

Psychology of Mob Mentality

Psychological Foundations of False Rumours

Sexual Harrassment

How Narcississts Play the Victim and Twist the Story

Despite the rumours that certain individuals circulated, I have a clear updated C.R.B certificate dated 3rd March 2020 – no criminal records were found.

“People think that a liar gains a victory over his victim. What I’ve learned is that a lie is an act of self-abdication, because one surrenders one’s reality to the person to whom one lies, making that person one’s master, condemning oneself from then on to faking the sort of reality that person’s view requires to be faked… The man who lies to the world, is the world’s slave from then on…There are no white lies, there is only the blackest of destruction, and a white lie is the blackest of all.”
-Ayn Rand

My main focus is now the Teazer role connected to ‘Osses and Mari Lwyds.

The Squire of: Beltane Border Morris complimented me on my Teazing role at the: All Hallows Gathering 2016. Hearing this from an Officer of one of the best Morris sides who give 100% during their performances, was indeed a compliment.

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All Hallows Gathering Boscastle 2018 – by John Isaac

Cassandra is no longer Teazer for Penkevyll after an impressive 20 years and from 2017 (after 8 years of performing alongside her) she handed the role over to me. I now have apprentice Teazers who are progressing well.

Laetitia & Morvargh -All Hallows Gathering Boscastle 2018 – by John Isaac

I am also the proud owner and rider of: Morvargh the Dark Sea ‘Oss taking her to events when Penkevyll is unavailable and occasionally they appear together. One of my apprentice Teazers also rides Morvargh at events.

The fun continues….

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