John Heydon lived in Harrow and organised the Herga Folk Club. The Club diversified, formed a morris dance side and started to run ceilidhs on the first Friday of the month in Pinner. John moved to Haddenham in 1971 but continued running the Pinner Ceilidhs to 1974 and the Herga Folk Club to 1989.
It was when John moved to Haddenham that he discovered Haddenham Village Hall and thought
"WOW, What a venue for ceilidhs!" and started a monthly series. They have continued ever since.
"Haddenham Ceilidh with Hugh Rippon"
by Penny Heydon. The original was presented
to Hugh Rippon in June 2012
We believe our mixture is right. We cater for new people, regular attendees, both young and old. Continuity of dates and venue all assist in ensuring a successful event. We start on time! The atmosphere is informal, but with a gentle touch of formality. It is genuine and so many people play a role in this: the door staff, those serving drinks and refreshments and the m.c.
We aim for good lively bands that play good tunes, well phrased and with lift and body. Some are loud, some not so loud. We book bands that are there as a dance bands playing for those dancing and not those for their own egos.
We have never been afraid to experiment with bands; e.g. the Bushwackers & Bullockies Bush Band, the Oyster Ceilidh Band, the Albion Band, Brass Monkey and the High Level Ranters have all played at Haddenham.
We like floor spots. Not every ceilidh organiser does As mentioned earlier, they are an essential traditional element of our version of "the ceilidh". They break things up, prevent the general dancing from becoming too intense, give people a breather and introduce people to the wide range of possibilities in the folk world. You can even rest from dancing and go into our acoustic concert venue should you so choose.
It must come over as a complete, solid event: bar, refreshments, CD sales, floor spots- songs, music, dances, publicity of other events, introductions for people who want to move on to related specialist activities like dance clubs, morris and song clubs and of course, in some cases, everlasting social relationships.
We had our 400th ceilidh on Saturday April 6th 2013. Helping us to celebrate were our esteemed caller/m.c. Hugh Rippon, our band, Peeping Tom on the final gig of their 40th anniversary tour, our old friends dance display side Towersey Morris, and to make it even more of a party, we had our concert guests, Mrs. Ackroyd to laugh with.
Keep checking our website so you don't miss out on a good evening's entertainment. Put the dates in your diary now - Remember, the First Saturday of the month October to June ad infinitum.