As a child I did tap, ballet, and modern lessons. I attended the occasional ceilidh and I was told by a ballerina in Mexico that I was a ‘natural’ and ought to dance more. I didn’t… until mid-life when I started pursuing folk dancing quite seriously and realised I love to dance. I get something out of it that I don’t get from anything else. I took an active role in the Lancaster University Folk Society where I called and, unsurprisingly, liked passing on my knowledge of how to dance. I go to folk events where I enjoy making connections with good partners and have been told “you’re a better dancer than you think you are” and “you’re a lot of fun to dance with” … I’m always happy when the good partners realise that and dance with me more!

I set up Lancaster Contra Dance because there is not enough contra in the north. The intention was so I could dance more but it’s going to need a bit of persuasion to get other people to call, and then I run the risk of people who would travel for well known callers being less likely to do that. So it’s currently under experimentation. As a side effect of setting up LCD I took up ASD because I was booking a room through someone involved with that… I broke all the rules and was dancing SSD in about a month, mainstream within 6 months (after a couple of weeks ‘training’) where I was told I was “doing very well, as expected”, and taught myself plus to dancing standard within a month after that with a massive compliment of “you’re better than some people who’ve been dancing for years because you’re always in the right place at the right time” – I dance all levels at both roles of course. Dancing that has made me more confident in dancing and calling contras with ASD moves, and I’ve written some contras with fairly difficult ASD moves which are way beyond the level I’ve been taught.

I can offer you calling for occasional dances.