An original way to get fit in the new year

Redditch Advertiser: The White Hart Morris Men performing at the Alcester Folk Festival in 2008. Buy photo: MM250803a at redditchadvertiser.co.uk/pictures or call 01527 889030. The White Hart Morris Men performing at the Alcester Folk Festival in 2008. Buy photo: MM250803a at redditchadvertiser.co.uk/pictures or call 01527 889030.

ALCESTER residents left feeling stuffed by Christmas over-indulgence will have a chance to get in shape in the most unusual way in the new year as the town’s Morris dancing troop appeals for some new recruits.

The White Hart Morris men originally formed in Redditch in 1972, but they brought their Cotswold Morris dancing style over to Alcester in 2005 and firmly made it their home.

Currently the White Hart Morris has 15 members, including four musicians, but they’re hoping to boost their numbers after several members retired recently.

The dancers perform regularly at many of Warwickshire’s festivals and events, bringing a flash of colour and English tradition, and every May Day they dance in the dawn at St James’ Church, Weethley, near Alcester.

Founder member Pete Neale said: “The White Hart Morris has been part of mine and my family’s life for over forty years. It’s a unique and wonderful English custom and I would be devastated if we had to close the group down. We really welcome anyone interested to come along and have a go in January.”

The White Hart Morris is planning two drop-in sessions on Monday, January 13, and Monday, January 27 from 8.30pm at the Holly Bush on Alcester, where people can come along, enjoy a pint and try their hand at a dance or two. No dancing skills are required.

Anyone interested in joining the White Hart Morris men, or finding out more, should contact Pete Neale on 07855 811045 or visit whitehartmorrismen.info.

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