As part of Farlington Prep School’s first ever Folk Week the girls had dance sessions where they learned ‘Shepherd’s Hey’ or ‘Buttered Peas’.
John and Ann Bacon from Ditchling Morris came to take the sessions so that the girls would be able to join in with a Barn Dance to be held on February 2.
The week focused on a broad spectrum of English folk traditions during which the girls researched into many of the diverse and colourful events that go on during the year all over the country.
Throughout the week there were several sessions: traditional story telling with Jamie Crawford; investigating the symbolism of the Green Man and making a clay example with Gail Duff from Traditional Arts Development South East; social dancing with Ditchling Morris; designing labyrinths; making tree dressings; a Morris Dancing performance with the school’s Farlington Belles and an invited side from Plumpton School; and a Wassail around the school’s apple trees. The Wassail was the culmination of the week with singing, dressing of the trees, dancing and making a hullabaloo; finishing of, of course, with hot spiced apple juice and apple cake.
The Folk Week was proposed to make the girls aware of their own heritage and culture, which hopefully will remain with them throughout their lives.