Cecil Sharp was a Londoner. He was born in South London and after a lengthy sojourn in South Australia he lived in North London for almost 20 years until he moved to a house in Uxbridge, West London in 1911. He returned to Hampstead in 1918.

His dance work in London was based at the South Western Polytechnic in Chelsea, where he began morris dancing classes in March 1909. He set up first a women's folk dance team in 1910 then a men's display team in 1912. The English Folk Dance Society was founded in London in Dec 1911.

He was able to collect some folksongs in London, mostly from the Marylebone workhouse. He met 25 singers in that workhouse in Northumberland Street* and collected 97 songs there - 6 of the singers were native Irish. In total in all of London he collected 140 songs from 36 singers (22 men, 14 women) but it is difficult to trace some of these singers due to the transient lives of many people in the capital. Their average age was 67. Of the 15 men with stated occupations, 5 were sailors, 3 labourers; 1 each silversmith, carpenter, bricklayer, French polisher, cabman, iron moulder and farrier. Of the 9 women with jobs, 3 were charwomen, 2 milkmaids, 2 servants, 1 each dressmaker and teacher.

*In the 1911 census there were 1,797 inmates in the Marylebone workhouse (1,059 males, 738 females).

Books by Author David Sutcliffe

Cecil Sharp and the Quest for Folk Song and Dance

A new biography of Cecil Sharp, written by David Sutcliffe

£20.00 + p&p

The Keys of Heaven - The Life of Revd Charles Marson

This is the first biography of the Revd Charles Marson.

£6.00 + p&p