A Brief History of Addingham Ceilidh Club

The idea of forming a ceilidh club began with a conversation at a Christmas party in 2004 based around the fact that there didn’t seem to be as many public ceilidhs being organised & it was a pity there wasn’t such a thing as a dance club available locally. The conversation eventually moved on but it was not forgotten, for in the New Year, Liz Bowen emailed Jenny Scott & Jennie Ellison, to suggest setting up such a club if a suitable venue could be found. As all 3 of them had years of experience calling dances with a variety of bands & Liz’s husband, Geoff, was a fiddle player with a great interest in music for dancing, it was a promising prospect.

At that time, Liz & Geoff were part of Yorkshire Dales Workshops, an organisation which had an office in Glusburn Institute, so Liz enquired into the possibility of using the main hall there. It was available on Sunday evenings, so Glusburn Ceilidh Club held its first monthly meeting in March 2005. There were enough interested people to have a reasonable number of dancers attending & the Club was more than lucky to have Geoff involved, as he collected together other musicians to create a band to provide the live music, something which has been a strength of the Club ever since. They named themselves “The Beneath the Clock Band”, as the stage on which they performed was directly under the Institute’s clock tower.

Yorkshire Dales Workshops were responsible for organising quite a number of folk related events in the area, one of them being the very popular New Year’s Day ceilidh in Addingham Memorial Hall. When they were no longer able to carry on arranging it, Glusburn Ceilidh Club took over.    Eventually, this led to a suggestion that as the Club now had such a strong link with Addingham it might be an idea to relocate. This proposal was put to a vote one club night & the first meeting of Addingham Ceilidh Club took place in the village in September 2009.

The rest, as they say, is history; but it is worth noting that the main reason the Club is thriving all these years later, is the loyalty & friendship of the regular dancers, many of whom have been coming to the Club since the first meeting in Glusburn. They go out of their way to make newcomers welcome, offer to partner anyone who has come along by themselves & are always willing to lend a hand with any jobs at the beginning or end of an evening. Why not come along for a dance or two & meet them?

Jennie Ellison