The Full English
NATIONAL PROJECT TO WIDEN THE REACH OF FOLK MUSIC & DANCE GIVEN GO AHEAD
Learning programmes and world’s biggest online portal of English folk music and dance gets Heritage Lottery Funding
A programme to create the world’s biggest online portal of English folk music, song and dance manuscripts has been given the go ahead.
The English Folk Dance and Song Society (EFDSS) has secured a grant of £585,400 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to archive, conserve and digitise materials from six archives containing some of the country’s most important folk music collections and allow free public access to 58,400 digitised collection items through a new digital archive.
The Full English project is also supported by the National Folk Music Fund, whose funding is given in memory of Ursula Vaughan Williams, and The Folklore Society.
The Full English project will bring together the collections of Harry Albino, Lucy Broadwood, Clive Carey, Percy Grainger, Maud Karpeles, Frank Kidson, Ella Mary Leather, Thomas Fairman Ordish, Cecil Sharp, Ralph Vaughan Williams and Alfred Williams for the first time, to create the most comprehensive searchable database of British folk songs, tunes, dances and customs in the world.
The Full English will also be EFDSS’s biggest learning and participation programme to date, and in each of the nine regions of England will:
- Work in partnership with education organisations, to increase awareness and knowledge of folk in education by training music educators and teachers, provide educational resources, regional learning events, and creative projects in primary and secondary schools and the wider community
- Partner local cultural organisations to deliver community projects comprising of participatory events and concerts, archive and history projects
- Carry out essential conservation work to the collections, preserving them for generations to come, and training volunteers in archive and conservation work
- Provide training and volunteering opportunities to up to 223 individuals and involve around 20,000 people in activities, performances and events
Katy Spicer, Chief Executive of EFDSS, said: “The Full English is the single most important development for these collections that together make up a unique reflection of a major aspect of the cultural heritage of England.
“This is a far reaching project that will enable people from across the world to access English folk music, songs and dances via the internet, and the conservation work will preserve the original collections for generations to come.
“Working in partnership with cultural and education organisations will allow us to deliver a range of community and school activities, introducing folk music to a new audience.”
Katy added: “We are very grateful to the Heritage Lottery Fund for the funding which will safeguard the future of these important collections and bring folk music to a generation that may otherwise never had heard of it.”
The cultural partnership organisations are: Cecil Sharp House, London, where EFDSS is based; Sound Connections and The British Library in London; SoundLINCS and Lincoln Drill Hall in Lincolnshire; Cambridge City Council/Cambridge Folk Festival and Cambridgeshire Music; Folkworks/The Sage Gateshead; The Met in Bury; The Stables in Milton Keynes; Colston Hall/Bristol Music Trust in Bristol; mac (the Midlands Arts Centre) in Birmingham and Opera North in Leeds.
EFDSS will be digitising its collections held within the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library (VWML) at Cecil Sharp House, and significant folk collections from the archives of project partners: The British Library in London, Clare College in Cambridge, The Mitchell Library in Glasgow, The Folklore Society Library and Archive at University College London, and the Wiltshire and Swindon History Centre.