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At the heart of English folk

Help Tom Robinson pick the Ultimate Folk Playlist for Now Playing @6Music

In June 2013 the English Folk Dance and Song Society (EFDSS) launched a huge online digital archive of England’s major manuscript collections from seven major archives, including those of Frank Sidgwick, Cecil Sharp, Ralph Vaughan Williams and many others, made largely possible with a £585,400 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

BBC Radio 6 Music will be celebrating The Full English project this Sunday. In preparation they want you to pick the Ultimate Folk Playlist. Suggest your favourite tracks and they may well be played on this Sunday's episode of Now Playing @6 Music.

Digital Folk on BBC Radio 4

John Kirkpatrick, one of the giants of the British folk scene, will be guiding listeners through The Full English digital archive in a BBC Radio 4 programme entitled "Digital Folk" today at 3.30pm*. You’ll hear from our very own Library Director Malcolm Taylor, musicians Billy Bragg, Fay Hield, Nancy Kerr and Martin Simpson, as well as playwrights Nell Leyshon and Lee Hall (of Billy Elliott fame). 

We've delved into the digital archive, so if you would like to explore any of the songs and tunes mentioned the links are listed below. Happy listening and discovering!

Five-date tour for Sam Carter & Catherine MacLellan this October

Anglo-Canadian Collaboration to tour UK

The results of an Anglo-Canadian collaboration by England’s Sam Carter and Canadian Catherine MacLellan will be premiered in the UK in October with a five-date tour.

Building works continue at Cecil Sharp House this September

Cecil Sharp House building project update from Rosie Baker, Operations Director at the English Folk Dance and Song Society (EFDSS).

Its nearly the end of the September and what a month it has been! If you have visited us recently you will have noticed that the foyer works have been unavoidably delayed and so we still have a floating reception desk and the entrance is usually through one of the back doors, so please follow the signs to find your way in! Thankfully this will only last another week and we will be working from a lovely new desk from Thursday 3 October. This ties in nicely with our first concert of the season in Kennedy Hall, Rhiannon Giddens and Leyla McCalla from the Carolina Chocolate Drops, who will be performing that same night so if you are coming along you will be the first to see the transformation.

Youth Folk Ensemble

New London-wide Youth Folk Ensemble to launch

Part of a Youth Music funded programme to include taster sessions across London boroughs

The English Folk Dance and Song Society (EFDSS) is launching a new London Youth Folk Ensemble for young musicians, thanks to a £64,937 grant from the National Foundation for Youth Music. The Ensemble, for improving and advanced players aged 12 to 18 years, is part of a wider programme that will include holiday courses and taster sessions across nine London boroughs taking place over the next two years.