The Kent Gathering of Traditional Music will take place at Frittenden, Kent on the 29th March. The aim is to present and introduce the traditional music, singing and dancing of the traditional communities of Kent, and widen understanding.

Please note that all tickets will be available on the day – there are no advance ticket sales.

The event is organised by a committee made up of Julie Arnott, Flirby Frampton, artistic adviser Paul Cowdell, artistic director George Frampton and chairman Gavin Atkin. Please contact us at gmatkin@gmail.com.

George Frampton, artistic director

George moved to Kent in 1986 to become a full-time member of the innovative Seven Champions Molly Dancers. He very shortly began a quest to discover and document the county’s musical traditions and revivals, becoming in time a founder member of the Thomas Clark Quire, and musician for the Fabulous Fezheads and Rabble Folk Theatre. He also claims honorary membership too of the St. Nicholas at Wade Hoodeners.

He sings songs learned from some of Kent’s old-time singers although, he confesses, still looks forward to his first solo engagement. He has researched, written and delivered lectures on a variety of folklore-related topics, and is currently chairman of In the Tradition at Sidmouth FolkWeek. Today, he acts as Artistic Director at the Kent Gathering.

Paul Cowdell, artistic adviser

Paul is a professional actor turned folklorist, who’s been interviewing and researching traditional music in Kent for a while now. He graduated with an MA in Folklore from the National Centre for English Cultural Tradition (NATCECT) at Sheffield University, having written my dissertation in traditional music on Romney Marsh.

He has spent much of the last two years doing fieldwork across Kent for the Smithsonian Institution’s Folklife Festival, where he acted as a presenter with Kent musicians and craftsmen. He claims that his particular interests have been rats and cannibals, and now he’s off to the University of Hertfordshire to research belief in ghosts.

Gavin Atkin, chairman

Gavin is an enthusiast who discovered the music of the people in his very early teens when living in North Lincolnshire, and has been fascinated by traditional music, singing and dancing ever since. Over the years he’s been involved with a number of clubs, bands, dance teams and musical groups, including the Kent dance team Seven Champions Molly Dancers and the country dance band Melons for Ecstacy.

These days Gavin plays English-style fiddle and guitar with the well known Kent-based dance band Florida, sings old songs, and plays a Jeffries duet concertina that was probably made for a music-hall artist. He also contributes regularly to the English Folk Dance & Song Society’s members’ magazine EDS.

Julie Arnott, secretary

Julie is a recent convert to traditional music. Her first loves are opera and Renaissance music, but one night at a session at the King Willie pub in Stowmarket organised by John and Katie Howson opened her eyes to a new world of music and dance. She now sings Tin Pan Alley songs with her partner Gavin Atkin’s concertina accompaniments.

Julie Arnott sings Moonlight Serenade

Flirby Frampton, treasurer

Flirby also moved to Kent in 1986. She dances with the well known Rabble Folk Theatre, and works each year in the box office staff at Sidmouth Folk Week, and also with the children who attend Sidmouth and Towersey Festivals.