The Holt Morris side at the Barge Inn, Bradford-On-Avon.

It is not every year that Holt Morris can muster enough members to embark on our annual endeavour to collect money for the Children in Need Appeal. Last year we missed out. However this made us more determined to make sure that in 2018 we did not! Preparations commenced a few weeks ago, after we had established a good personnel turnout, in terms of seeking permission and alerting "publicans" to our wish to visit their establishments for the purposes of "entertainment" and passing round the bucket.

Our tour commenced, as usual, at "The Castle Inn" where by good chance, a goodly number of patrons were already eating out or having an end of the working week drink. We always start here because the "Flatcapper" ale is particularly fine and tends to prepare the squad for the evening ahead, lifting spirits and vanquishing reservations about dangling collection buckets under the noses of unsuspecting Bradfordians.

The picture below shows the team limbering up with copious amounts of liquid fortitude for the evening ahead.

The Holt Morris side at the Castle Inn, Bradford-On-Avon.

The usual approach to all the pubs is, "Pay up, or we Dance!!" However, the amazing response universally was, "Dance or you get Nothing." The reception in every venue was very rewarding, and really put paid to the notion that Morris Dancing is something to be laughed at, or indeed, something to empty a pub, even on the busiest of nights! This was particularly vivid during visit 6, (or was it 7?) "The Three Horseshoes Inn" where, by happy chance, we arrived at the interval of the evening band’s performance who then kindly extended their break while we did OUR stuff in front of THEIR audience. During our dance I noticed that three members of the band were filming us on phones, (could be evidence for later banter) and when we finished, the loudest cheer came from them. Excellent and most gratifying.

All evening the bonhomie of people was fantastic, funny and rewarding... One donator promised us £20 if they could have a hug from all members of the side... We obliged... A very nice lady. People about to leave pubs, stayed on to watch us! People followed us around all evening- Or, just maybe, we were on the same pub crawl! It was a great night... And the rewards of our endeavour?

Total Raised :- £474.00 - including 5 donations of £20.00 or more, 16 of £5.00. or more and about 5 kgs. of so-called shrapnel- coins of all types, but mostly of £1.00. Holt Morris will present £500.00 to the cause, topping up the balance from our own coffers.