Early Wellington Dances: April 2023
Celebrating 60: Digitalisation of old videos
Other videos

Early Wellington Dances: 29 April 2023

On Saturday 29 April 2023, close to 60 Scottish Country dancers gathered at St John’s Anglican Church Hall in Johnsonville for an afternoon of trying out dances from our past. As part of the RSCDS Centenary Events, this special occasion of Early Wellington Dances 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. To add to this unique experience, The Cranberry Tarts—Aileen Logie and Hilary Ferral—provided music for the afternoon from the original tunes and arrangements used by well-known musician, the late Peter Elmes.

Click here for more about the Early Wellington Dances afternoon

Thankyou to John Patterson and Pat Reesby for videography and editing.

Edith Campbell taught Govandale Reel (The Morison’s Bush Collection) which was devised by Jim Lean, who played the records for many years at Lower Hutt Club. In this video of Govandale Reel, Edith gives a brief history of Govan, a district on the River Clyde in Glasgow, and the origins of the dance. She teaches the dance which is then shown just the first time through.

Feshiebridge, devised by Wellington Region tutor Gary Morris in Edinburgh in 1962, is published in The Morison’s Bush Collection. Elaine Laidlaw taught the dance.

Watch Feshiebridge

Romaine Butterfield taught her dance Joy Be Wi’ You (The Morison’s Bush Collection), a 5-couple dance with marvellous traditional music. She hoped the “joy would be with us” throughout the dance.

Watch Joy Be Wi’ You

Iain Boyd taught the last dance of the afternoon, Kelburn’s Reel (The Morison’s Bush Collection) devised by long-time tutor Betty Redfearn for the 10th Anniversary of Kelburn Club in 1969.

Watch Kelburn’s Reel

Celebrating 60

As part of the celebration of 60 years dancing in the Wellington Region in 2021, the Region Committee paid for the digitisation of several old films and videos of dancing in the Region.

Videos of Wellington Region Events

  • Silver Anniversary 1996
  • Lower Hutt 40th Anniversary
  • Wellington Region School 1994
  • Absolutely Positively One Fun Camp
  • Top Event James Cabaret 1993
  • Waikanae 1980

Other videos:

ANZAC Weekend School 1994

Wellington teacher candidates full certificate dancing 1998