Kennet Morris Men felt St Lawrence’s Churchwarden records for the year 1513 could not go unrecognised. The dedication day of 10th August – St Lawrence’s feast day (or St Laurence’s Church as it is now known) conveniently fell on a Saturday and we were able to celebrate the event exactly 500 years to the day. In preparation for the anniversary, a “Redding Moreys Dauncers” was formed by the Kennet Morris Men, dressed in authentic Tudor costume created for the occasion, performing dances reconstructed by Steve Rowley, an expert on dances of the period, and a past Kennet man.

We were joined by local sides Aldbrickham Clog, Borderline, Icknield Way, Garston Gallopers, Mayflower, OBJ, Shinfield Shambles and Yateley Morris Men.

The day began at 11:00am outside St Laurence’s Church with a welcome by The Deputy Mayor of Reading Councillor Tony Jones in the presence of Robin Springett, Squire of the Morris Ring, followed by dancing by Kennet & Redding Moreys. St Laurence’s Bell Ringers joined the celebrations with a peal or two. The medieval side repaired to The George (the only building of the era) where ale was ceremoniously purchased for 3 old pence!

Sides performed on the hour from 12:00 until 3:00pm for about half an hour dancing at each of 4 spots – The Forbury Gardens, Broad Street (the performance area nearest to The Ale House), The Market Place and St Mary’s Church precinct.

The day concluded at 4:00 pm inside St Laurence’s Church with a well attended Redding Moreys instructional passing down their ideas of medieval dance to wind up a thoroughly enjoyable, and sunny, day.

More photos of the day


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