Remembering Jean Blomfield

Jean Blomfield, who passed away in September, was one of the 14 founding signatories on the creation of Folk Camps Society Ltd in 1968. With her daughters Julia and Sara she was a big part of Folk Camps in the 1970’s and we Folk Campers owe her a big thank you.

Second Council Member co-opted

After the resignation of former Council Member Chris White, Council have co-opted former chair: Patrick Self to their number as of August 2019. The Folk Camps year is from the AGM in November, at which election results are counted and declared for the Council places in the following year. Our rules state that any co-opted Council Members will have to stand for election at AGM.

More information will be sent to governing members in due course. Nominations for election to Council will be invited in September. To vote, stand, or propose a candidate, you must be a governing member.
Associate members wishing to become governing members, please see here for more details.

Council member resignation

Sadly, Chris White has offered his resignation from Council due to pressure of work and family commitments making him unable to offer the time he would like for Council duties. Council members are considering their next step before important decisions to be made at the September Working Weekend.

Council member Co-opted

After the resignation of former Council Member and Company Secretary Mic Spenceley, Council have appointed Judith Jenkins as Company Secretary and have co-opted Jane Wheeler to their number as of late May 2019. The Folk Camps year is from the AGM in November, at which election results are counted and declared for the Council places in the following year. More information will be sent to governing members in due course. Associate members wishing to become governing members, please see here for more details.

Remembering Mick Green

Mick was a happy camper. Once he discovered Folk Camps in the early 70s that was his summer holiday sorted for the next almost 50 years. He, Dil and I arrived at our first camp in (I think) 1971 and Dil and I got out of the car and were immediately sick – it had been a long drive and Mick’s ancient automobile had some sort of petrol-related fault. But it got better after that. The Folk Camp blend of sociability, self-reliance, community, live music and dance, being outdoors and being very regularly fed was a perfect mix for Mick.

Fifty – well, 48 – years is a very long time and the fact that the fundamentals stayed unchanged all that time really suited him too, and he worked hard to keep it that way, campaigning on Council to keep ‘proper’ marquees.

As everyone who knew him knows, if Mick considered a thing worth doing he would do it absolutely whole-heartedly, whether that was singing a song, stripping the willow, peeling a spud or having a loud political disagreement with someone. The countryside settings – some of which he found as official site-finder, though this seemed to take extraordinarily amounts of time and road miles – were also wonderful for Mick, since he could go off walking and bird-watching. (If you’ve ever heard Mick talk about his childhood, he was clearly the most wholesome child ever, dividing his time between the library, woods and fields, train-spotting and fishing, and all with neatly combed hair.)

Everyone will have their own Folk Camp memories of Mick, but I have to admit my favourite is when he fell and dislocated his shoulder – a friend who was out of the marquee at that point asked what all the commotion was told by a small girl, “oh, an old man’s fallen over”. He was probably my age. I’m so glad Mick found Folk Camps, for all the happiness they’ve given him, me and my family, Frances and Esme, and for the life-long friendships renewed each year. I know a marquee this summer will see a special send-off for Mick, and the whole family wants to pass on its thanks for all the lovely messages on the Cold Bogmarsh site.

Mick will be having a celebratory memorial event in the village hall in Bacton, Herefordshire, on Sunday 28th April from 2pm – all are welcome, and all are invited to speak or sing and we might well have some dancing too.

Harriet (Green) Berenger

National Open Youth Orchestra (NOYO)

National Open Youth Orchestra

The National Open Youth Orchestra (NOYO) is a world first, an ambitious orchestra launched in September 2018 to give some of the UK’s most talented young disabled musicians a progression route. It promotes musical excellence, empowering disabled and non-disabled musicians aged 11-25 to train and perform together as members of a pioneering ensemble.
Some of the National Open Youth Orchestra musicians play acoustic instruments; others, electronic instruments like the Clarion, which can be played with the movement of any part of the body including the eyes.
NOYO collaborates with cutting-edge composers to create exciting new music for a diverse range of musicians and instruments. Our first commission, ‘The Umbrella’ by Liam Taylor-West won a British Composer Award in 2018.
Call out for talented musicians (11-25 years old)
Want to take your music to the next level? The deadline to apply to audition for NOYO this year is 31 March, for a September 2019 start. To succeed with NOYO, you’ll need a passion for music, the potential to play an instrument to a high standard, and determination to persevere. If you’re lacking orchestral experience, don’t let that stop you.

passing on our cultural traditions to future generations

Passing on Our Cultural Traditions to Future Generations Saturday 23 March 2019, Tara Theatre, London
A Conference Hosted by the ICOMOS-UK Intangible Cultural Heritage Committee and Supported by Arts Council England Storytelling, performing arts, rituals and festive events, healing systems, crafts, culinary traditions, fishing and gathering practices are just some of the living traditions of the UK’s vast intangible cultural heritage. Questions regarding records and conservation arise: how and why should living heritage be preserved? How can a culturally aware and inclusive framework be created and implemented? The Conference will be a platform to explore how practicing communities, civil society, arts and heritage organisations can help to promote and pass on our customs and cultural traditions to next generations.
Book your tickets on ICOMOS-UK’s website:

Music Mark newsletter – sign up to receive

Folk Camps is a member of Music Mark – who call themselves the UK Association for music education. They issue a monthly newsletter which is email specific and full of links. It is not suitable for putting on the FC website, so anyone who wishes to receive this through our membership, please let me know and I will set up an email circulation list for the newsletter.
There are lots of articles aimed at music teachers in various fields – news, events, symposisa, training opportunities, competitions, resources, vacancies etc, I imagine well worth a look for those in the profession or looking to enter it.

email me at the office if you wish to be added to the list.


Recorder Tunes Published

Folk Camps has published a new free PDF book for download: Folk Tunes for Recorders. This contains multi-part arrangements of traditional music for descant, treble and tenor recorders. These have been painstakingly digitised from handwritten scores by Geoffrey Ginn, who was a school teacher in the 1960s and 70s and wrote the arrangements for his primary school-aged pupils. He took this music along to Folk Camps with his family, and often found other people to make music with. Now the music is available for download, print or performance for use by anyone who wishes to perform the music for their own pleasure, for educational purposes or for a charitable or non-commercial nature. There are PDF scores, midi and MP3 files all available for your use.