Reaching out to the community

The gift of having raised funds from numerous and diverse Folk Events, as well as receiving generous grants from local and national organisations, means that Kimpton Folk Events, a registered charitable trust, can begin its work on outreach programs as one of our original established goals!

The focus will be to create awareness to the wider community of the enjoyment and integration of folk music and dance, inclusiveness to all especially vulnerable and otherwise excluded members of society and teaching a new skills set to any who want to learn.

This starting point of a three-tier approach will be to work with several classes in Primary Schools, small tutorials for teen musicians and pop-up concerts for elderly, lonely and vulnerable adults. 

The Primary School work is being tackled by hiring a professional Folk Musician/teacher Paul Scourfield, to run two one-day workshops in Kimpton Primary School bringing singing, music and dance from their local and national heritage to give the gift of a program that the school can ‘perform’ and roll out at future school, village and community events.  It will be supported by the in-house music teacher and has received strong enthusiasm from head teacher Tracy Clements. The two dates are April 30th and June 18th after which Paul, in discussion with the staff will assess the children’s interest and strengths to create the opening item for the Kimpton Folk Festival on the village green with music, song and dance. 

Materials are already being researched with input from the Kimpton Historical society for folklore, songs, notations or photographs of dances, celebrations or other events which took place in the village. This would fit appropriately with the school’s curriculum in familiarity with local history and awareness for the children of their heritage and past. 

The Teen music ‘tutorials’ are being aimed at hosting senior school musicians in the community to learn British Folk Dance tunes by heart, work in a ‘band’ environment and perform at local events including the annual Barn Dance in the Memorial Hall as well as creating their own ‘event’ for school either as entertainment or as a fundraiser.  The skills set required to play at a competent level, follow a dance-caller and other musicians whilst observing the dancers, is a complex partnership and will launch these young musicians to appreciate their legacy of folk traditions. the goal would also be to create a liking for the genre of music to which they may not have been previously exposed. 

The Elderly and Vulnerable program will commence in the newly refurbished Dacre Rooms venue in Kimpton with a free ‘musical coffee and cake morning’ welcoming them to enjoy a folk concert especially for those otherwise not represented in the local community. The performers will be an informal group of the local musicians who make up the regular sessions at The Boot pub on 2nd and 4th Thursdays. Publicity for the event through the Parish Newsletter, friends of the Dacre Rooms, Nannies4Grannies, Hertfordshire Council’s get active program and fliers in the doctor’s surgery as well as social media has created some excellent responses and interest. Reaching out to Social Media users to invite them to notify any neighbour or friend who may be eligible is hopefully the way to reach our target audience.  A recent article in the Welwyn and Hatfield Times

The date of the first one of these is April 18th from 10-12. If you know anyone who you think might benefit, do get in touch via the contact details here.

June Rowlands

Trustee, Kimpton Folk Events