SDU Inaugural Meeting

This is a synopsis of the proceedings of the inaugural meeting of the Sword Dance Union, held at the Black Swan Inn in York on 9th July 2005. Minutes of the meeting are to be published soon on the SDU's forthcoming website.

A strong and argumentative contingent of rapper and longsword thinkers, dancers and observers met to test the waters regarding the formation of a Sword Dance Union.

The proposal to form an SDU was put to the meeting and carried.

A provisional committee of Sally Wearing, Andy Smith, John Asher, Don Ratcliffe and Sally Atkinson with Phil Heaton as the chair was elected to begin the process of formalising the Union and looking at the possible ways forward. Among the many ideas discussed were:

  • Longsword “festival” involving the youth teams especially
  • Longsword competition with an offer of trophies and financial support
  • Design of a logo/emblem
  • Consideration of a recognition by the SDU of those whose work and activities have kept the traditions alive
  • Awards from the SDU to those considered to have promoted the SDU aims
  • Sword Spectacular
  • Wider involvement in DERT – support for organisers
  • Register of teachers available
  • Buying/loaning/hiring swords
  • Involvement with festivals that provide workshops via individuals and teams to support their own programmes – Shooting Roots, Folkworks, Sidmouth, Whitby, etc.
  • Raising money for projects via grant awards etc.
  • International teams wishing to be involved
  • Advanced communication and networking
  • Involvement with organisations such as CIOFF, Europeade, Exchange Sans Frontières, CDSS, EFDSS, CID
  • Liaison with the Morris Ring, Federation and Open Morris
  • International liaison