Founded 1984

Report of Spring Weekend Isle of Wight

The sun shone as members arrived on the Isle of Wight for the Old Time Dance Society Spring weekend; some had arrived earlier in the week to make a longer holiday.

There were 98 booked in and the ballroom was set out for the evenings dancing.  Although we were seated in our groups some of the areas were not big enough to accommodate the number of chairs required and the Chairman was sat in the corner at the back of the room, however, with a bit of ingenuity the members managed to sort it out.

The first evening Michelle Boddy, from Lincoln, was leading and as she explained due to changes on the committee and committee members unable to attend due to health reasons, Michelle had permission to lead with friends as well as the committee members who were present.

There was a great atmosphere even though members had been travelling; the programme included some good old dances and a few of the newer dances which were popular with all the members.  The floor was full with 6 sets for the Lancers, and some of the dancers dressed as sailors for the Marine Four Step and of course there were fascinators for the Ascot Gavotte.  

On Saturday the weather was wet and blustery and Fred held a walkthrough of The Princess Ena Quadrilles as not many members knew it. Fred did a good job of getting the three sets into shape.                                                        

The weather remained wet and windy but despite that everyone made the most of the weather. A group of us walked to Shanklin and met up with a group who had completed a treasure trail. Some went to Newport shopping, a group from Leicester went on a circular bus tour of Yarmouth the guide described various points of interest but because it was so wet the windows were misted up so they could not see anything, but they had fun. Meanwhile Carol and David held classes in playing UNO for other members. However, the star prize for activity went to Christine Mudd, from London, who went swimming in the sea, Old Time Dancers are made of stern stuff.

Saturday evening leaders were Pat and Mike Cooper from Cannock, another good programme and atmosphere, although, it was decided to change the set dance to The Quadrilles instead of The Princess Ena Quadrilles which must have been disappointing for those who knew it and those who worked hard in the morning to learn it.

It was very windy on Sunday morning with the threat of more rain so Grahame, Michelle and Paul changed their plans and put on a request morning in the Ballroom for any members who did not want to go out.

It was also Joyce Parry’s 95th Birthday and to celebrate she led the Bambi Blues, she insisted on leading it with James because “he holds me tight and I feel safe”.                  

40 members attended the session and one member said it had made a dull morning brighter. The programme included 19 dances covering a wide range including Over The Top, Doris Waltz, Tangos Royal Empress, Lola and Las Vegas, Invitation and Glengarry swing, Saunters Reve, Britannia Saunter.

We then took a bus to Ryde which cost Hazel £3.50 (yes we all know you haven’t got a bus pass yet Hazel, you keep on about it all the time) we had a quick cup of coffee, some had a chip butty while we watched a parade of old buses that seemed to be just going around and around in a circle. Hazel insisted on us getting the train back which meant we all had to pay which made her happy.

The final nights dancing was led by Kathleen and Mike Savory from Leicester with Marie and Janet helping out with a few of the dances. Joyce Parry was presented with a bouquet of flowers from the Society for her birthday and Joyce said it had been her best birthday ever. It is always nice to have Joyce with us she has been a member since 1985.  Yet again a good and varied programme, with 8 sets for The Caledonians and nearly the whole room hopping in the Festival Glide.

David Ingley provided the music for the whole weekend, including playing for the two morning sessions. The Old Time Dance Society always enjoy him playing for us and as usual this weekend we all enjoyed dancing and singing to his music.

The Hotel was excellent; the food was very good with a varied and wide choice on the menu.  The staff were friendly although the parking was not as good as it was the last time we stayed at the hotel. The hotel has asked us to send them some photographs of us dancing and of course we will happily oblige anything for some free publicity for the Old Time Dance Society.

Thanks to all the committee of the Old Time Dance Society, the leaders and all those who contributed to make it another successful Old Time Dancing weekend.

Produced by Paul and Hazel Harding – Edited by Sue Hamm Press Officer