Lower North Island RSCDS Centenary Ball


A once-in-a-lifetime experience

To celebrate the Centenary of the RSCDS, over 130 people keen to dance and socialise filled the floor at the Lower North Island RSCDS Centenary Ball in Palmerston North on 4 November. The RSCDS Hawke’s Bay, Rangitikei and Wellington Regions combined to host this special Tri-Region Ball to celebrate the role of the extended region from Hawke’s Bay to Whanganui through to Wellington as the well-spring of Scottish Country Dancing in New Zealand.

The Grand March, which was piped in by Nicole Trewavas

The programme included a dance from almost all New Zealand devisers who have had dances published by the RSCDS. Other dances of historical significance included homages to Miss Jean Milligan and Mrs Ysobel Stewart.

Enjoying Morison’s Bush devised by Ken Shaw in 1954. Morison’s Bush in the Wairarapa was the venue of the first Scottish Country Dance Balls ever held in New Zealand.

Twenty-six past and present tutors from the Lower North Island attended the Ball. Seventeen long-standing tutors were honoured by each briefing a dance at the occasion.

Lower North Island tutors

RSCDS New Zealand Branch President Linda Glavin briefed Petronella. President Elect Debbie Roxburgh took on the task of overall MC’ing of the evening, including introducing each tutor. It was a treat to dance to fabulous music from the Balmoral Dance Band during the evening.

A highlight of the evening was Wellington Region President Rod Downey presenting a Tribute to Edith Campbell in recognition of the generous giving of her time, teaching, creative and organisational skills to the Wellington Region over decades. Congratulations Edith and thank you for over 60 years of service to Scottish Country Dancing. See the full citation for her award

Rod Downey presenting Edith Campbell with her Wellington Region Tribute
Glenice, Rod and Isabel cutting the celebratory RSCDS Centenary cake, to be enjoyed by all at supper.

As well as a celebration of the rich history of Scottish Country Dancing in New Zealand, this special occasion was a showcase of all the things we enjoy about this wonderful activity. Thank you to all who worked together to organise this once-in-a-lifetime experience. See more about the dances, the devisers, and photos and videos

See all of Loralee Hyde’s photos and download if you wish

Review: An afternoon of Early Wellington Dances

A unique experience of our Scottish Country Dancing history

A lively crowd of close to 60 dancers gathered at St John’s Anglican Church Hall in Johnsonville on Saturday 29 April for an afternoon of trying out dances from our past.

As part of the RSCDS Centenary Events, this special occasion celebrated the role of the extended RSCDS Wellington Region as the well-spring of Scottish Country Dancing in New Zealand.

Over the afternoon, four long-time tutors from the Region—Iain Boyd, Romaine Butterfield, Edith Campbell and Elaine Laidlaw—taught dances from the early days of Scottish Country Dancing in the lower North Island.

Our tutors: Elaine Laidlaw, Edith Campbell, Romaine Butterfield and Iain Boyd

Welcoming everyone to the occasion, event organiser Rod Downey explained the event was a celebration of the extended region as the ‘cradle of Scottish Country Dancing’ in New Zealand. He emphasised the stars of the afternoon were the old dances, with the stellar group being the well-regarded tutors.

Programme organiser Iain Boyd introduced the teacher for each dance, mentioning many of the dances have special music with arrangements by Peter Elmes.

See more about this special occasion, the old dances, photos by Loralee Hyde and videos by John Patterson and Pat Reesby

Wellington Region, New Zealand Branch, RSCDS 60th Anniversary Collection

A collection of dances to commemorate the RCDS Wellington Region’s 60th Anniversary.

Available to purchase at $15 per copy

Contact Elaine Lethbridge at elainea.lethbridge49@gmail.com