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At the heart of English folk

About us

Championing the folk arts of England

“Welcome to the website of the English Folk Dance and Song Society (EFDSS) or eff-dss as we say for ease!

EFDSS is the national folk arts development organisation for England. We are here to champion the English traditional arts – music, song, dance, storytelling, customs and traditions – as part of the rich and diverse cultural landscape of the UK.

We’re about preserving them, and we do that in our award winning library, the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library (VWML) named after our former president, the composer Ralph Vaughan Williams.

But we’re also about promoting - shouting about the richness and huge variety of art forms and wonderful people that work under this all-encompassing, very elastic term called FOLK, and providing endless opportunities for people to get involved.

And we’re about developing. Folk is living, breathing and constantly being re-invented; we encourage artists to be inspired by the songs and dances that have been handed down through the generations and support them in various ways to create new songs, tunes and dances.

From big bands to solo singers, morris dancers to contemporary choreographers, schools to mass participation, intimate folk clubs to major concert halls – our work reaches far and wide. And we’d love you to be a part of it.

Take a look around our website to find out more about our activities, or let us know what you’re up to through Facebook or Twitter.

Welcome to the world of folk!"

Katy Spicer
Chief Executive

Cecil Sharp House: our London-based HQ plays host to a whole range of events
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Vaughan Williams Memorial Library: a wealth of knowledge open to anyone
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Education and learning: EFDSS is dedicated to furthering understanding of the folk arts
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The Full English: our most ambitious project to date
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The Full English

The Full English

Unlocking hidden treasure of England’s cultural heritage. The Full English is the world’s largest free digital archive English folk songs, tunes, dances and customs. Containing more than 58,400 items from 12 of the country’s most important early 20th century folk music collections, you can delve into wherever you are in the world.

 

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Shape the Future: support Cecil Sharp House. Please consider making a contribution today. Any gift, large or small, really will make a difference.