Latest News

Summertime's Garden Party


Southern Ball Weekend 2019


Bryan Smith Memorial Dance June 2019


Summertime's April Dance 2019


Final Summertime Holiday January 2019



News 2017

We are pleased to announce that the sixth “Southern Ball” of Traditional and Classical Old Time Dancing will take place on the 18th July 2019 at the Civic Centre, Trowbridge.  Music will be provided by David Last and the Leaders will be Hazel & Paul, Hilary & Nigel & Diane & Joyce.  More details can be found here.

Joyce's 80th Birthday Old Time Tea Dance

On Sunday 1st September, we celebrated Joyce's 80th birthday.  A full house of 85 people from all over the UK attended with a long waiting list showing what high regard Joyce is held in.  Old time dancing has been part of Joyce's life since childhood and she has jointly run Summertime Dancing with Richard since its inception at the turn of the century.  Music for the celebrations was provided by the excellent David Last, a regular at Summertime Dancing.

The dance programme consisted of Joyce's popular dances including Waltz Debonair, Trelawney Tango,  Kaybee Saunter and the Regis Waltz.  In all some 16 dances were on the programme.  The set dance was the Quadrilles.

Joyce provided an excellent variety of sandwiches and cakes for the interval.  There had been a large collection made amongst Joyce's many dancing friends and she was presented with a bouquet of flowers and a sum of cash sum to enable Joyce to buy a new Rose Arch.

The event was also Richard's final stint as Leader and MC for a formal live music dance event.  However Joyce will continue running Saturday Old Time Dances with live music supported by Hilary & Nigel in 2020.  Here's hoping that Joyce will continue to enjoy old time dancing for many years to come.  More photos can be found here.


Summertime's Garden Party - August 2019

Sunday 11th October was the date of the annual Summertime's Garden Party at Purcell's Towers.  Dancers from all over the area arrived to partake of tea and refreshments and view various assorted flowers.   

The garden looked very good although there were less flower blooms than usual probably due to the poor summer. Fortunately the rain held off for the afternoon and there was a great deal of chatter breaking the tranquility of the garden.

A collection was held for Cancer UK.







Southern Ball Weekend 2019

The weekend of July 20-21 marked the date for this year's Southern Ball in Winchester and the Post Ball Tea Dance in Normandy, Surrey.  This is the last year they will be held at these locations.  Next year the Southern Ball and Tea Dance will be held in Trowbridge and Westbury respectively.  The weekend also marked the retirement of Richard Purcell from MC/demonstrating at major events although he will still continue to run the Summertime Old Time Club on a Monday afternoon.  The music for the weekend was provided as always by David Last who played brilliantly.  Attendees came from all around the country and Canada!

The weekend began with the Southern Ball with leaders Joyce and Richard (MC), Hazel and Paul, Hilary & Nigel & Diane (photo left).

The programme consisted of mainly older dances with the popular Black Country Blues being the  "new" one on the programme.  Around 90 attended and with the music generated an excellent atmosphere for the evening.  Diane organised an excellent raffle which took two sessions to get through.  The dancing finished with the Waltz Debonair.  Next year the Ball will be held at the Civic Centre Trowbridge on the 18th July in conjunction with a Post Ball Tea Dance on the 19th July at the Westbury Labour Club, Westbury near Trowbridge.

Photos of the Southern Ball can be found here.

On the Sunday around 80 dancers attended the Post Ball Tea Dance at Normandy hosted by Joyce and Richard.  The majority of the dancers had attended the Southern Ball on the previous evening.  The programme was a mixture of old and new with 20 dances on the programme starting with the Mexican Swing and finishing with the Friendly Waltz.  The Leaders' dances were the Melody Foxtrot and the Serene Saunter.  There were two progressive dances; the Imperial Two Step and the Alpine Stroll.  There was a lively set dance, the Caledonians, which caused a great deal of hysterical merriment in one set.

It was warm outside so the air conditioning was at full stretch to cope. Refreshments consisted of tasty home made savouries and cakes. There was also a raffle.

Again there was a great atmosphere aided by the music of David Last.

The close of the Tea Dance marked the end of an era for the Southern Ball weekend, with a new chapter beginning with its move to Trowbridge next year.


Summertime's Bryan Smith Memorial Dance 1st June 2019

Summertime's Annual dance playing tribute to the music of Bryan Smith took place on Saturday 1st June 2019.  It is different that other dances in so far as the music is from vinyl records rather than CDs. Although he passed away a number of years ago his music lives on.   MCs were Richard and Joyce.

The attendance was lower than hoped for mainly due to illness and holidays.  However there were enough attendees to generate a good atmosphere.  Apart from the Black Country Blues, all the dances were pre-2000 ranging from the Quadrilles to the Sindy Swing,  The Leaders dances were the Tango Serida and Saunter Together so not too taxing.

There were two progressive dances with "valuable" spot prizes - Helena Quickstep and the Georgella Blues.  There was also a sizeable raffle.  

Ample food was provided by the attendees in the form of a Bring and Share supper.  Summarising, it was an enjoyable evening of dancing despite the low numbers.

The next Summertime Old Time Dance is the Sunday Tea Dance on the 21st July with David Last following the Southern Ball.  This is already wait listed.


Terry Harris 27th April 2019

We were very upset to hear that Terry Harris had passed away last night after battling an illness for some time. Terry along with his wife Dianne are the Area Reps for Somerset and Wiltshire on behalf of the Old Time Dance Society.  They are staunch members of Bath Old Time Dancers and joint leaders at the Annual Southern Ball.  Terry and Dianne were very popular and well liked throughout the Old Time Dancing world.  Terry and Diane attended many Summertime Holidays and dances.

Terry was a very kind and sympathetic man always willing to give help where needed and he will be greatly missed.  Our sincere condolences go to his wife Dianne and all his family.





Summertime's April Dance 2019

Saturday the 6th of April was Summertime's first live music dance of the season.  It was a special occasion as the music was provided by keyboard player Jonathan Allen who normally attends Summertime's dances as a dancer.  However he has started playing for dances around the country as he is an accomplished organist.  He played some lovely music primarily from the musicals.  I am sure we will see more of him.

MC's for the evening were Richard & Joyce and their was a better than expected attendance.

Dances ranged from old Traditional Classical such as the Heather Waltz to newer classical dances such as the Promenade Gavotte.  Progressive dances were the Imperial Two Step and the Mayfair Quickstep.  The Leaders' dances were the Classic Gavotte and the Trelawney Tango.  Helping Richard & Joyce lead off were, Hilary & Nigel, Shirley & Gordon and Hazel & Paul.

There was a sizeable raffle.  It was a very enjoyable evening.

The next formal dance will be to Bryan Smith's Records on the 1st June.


Final Summertime Holiday January 2019

The weekend of the 4th to 7th of January 2019 was the date of the final Summertime Old Time Holiday at the Marsham Court Hotel.  These have been running for many years and my wife and I have been going to them for over 10 years.  However Richard has finally decided to give up running them going out on a high.  The holiday was full with 56 guests attending.  Music was to CDs for the first night but the Saturday and Sunday night were danced to the wonderful live music of David Last.  You cant beat the atmosphere generated by live music.  The weather for the weekend was cold but fine.

Friday:  Arrival day.  Following the customary drinks party we all had a good dinner and retired to the ballroom for an evening of requests.  The requests consisted of the Ragtime Swing, Tayside Tango, Sherrie Saunter, Crystal Blues, Imperial Two Step, Fylde Waltz, Idaho Foxtrot, Royal Empress Tango, Viennese Swing, Selby Swing, Edwardian Gavotte, Southern Two Step, Kaymar Sway, La Chappeloise, Midnight Tango, Crinoline Gavotte and the Doris Waltz.  Assisting Richard and Joyce in leading off were Hilary & Nigel, Shirley & Gordon, Veronica and Linda, Margaret & Clive and Tony & Christine.

Saturday:  After breakfast, Richard held a practice morning.  Apart from general dancing, Richard & Joyce taught the Floral Blues and recapped the Stardust Gavotte, both of which seemed to go down well.  The afternoon was free for sightseeing or shopping.  After dinner there was a full dance programme this time to the live music of David Last.  The dress code was Black & White.  The dances were a good mix of new and old varying from the newer dances such as the Elizabethan Waltz and the Floral Blues to old favourites such as the Waverley Two Step and the Chrysanthemum Waltz.  The set dance was the Quadrilles.  The Leaders' dances were the Bambi Blues and the Saunter Shiraz.  The progressive dances were the Alpine Stroll and the Sindy Swing.  Afterwards a few of us retired to the bar to put the world right.

Sunday: The day was free for sightseeing and shopping.  The evening's dancing was moved to the newly refurbished Solent Suite and there were pre-dinner drinks served in the Suite.  The dress code for the evening was Red, White & Blue which everyone joined in with.   The evening's dancing was again to the live music of David Last with the usual mix of old and new old time dances.   The set dance was the Lancers.  The Leaders' dance was the Tango Serida.  The Elimination Dance, the Mayfair Quickstep, was won by Malcolm and Moira. Rebecca won both the weekend's competitions and donated one of the prizes to the evenings raffle which raised £102 for Cancer Research.  

The weekend was, as usual, very successful and its a shame there will be no more Summertime Holidays.  Grateful thanks go to Joyce and Richard for all their hard work in organising the holidays.

On a final note, my wife and I had to leave early for family reasons and we would like to thanks all those present for their card and messages of support.

A photo page can be found here.