Preece, William

Collection date: Dec 1909

Area: Herefordshire


William Preece at Dilwyn (1847-1915): age 62, 3 fiddle tunes (FT2423-5) on 29 Dec 1909: Dilwyn is 6 miles SW of Leominster. William’s tunes were ‘Hunting the Squirrel’, ‘Flowers of Edinburgh’ and ‘Jack off the Green’. He had played fiddle for morris men at both Dilwyn and at Leominster. Ella Leather collected the Dilwyn dance information and trained some schoolchildren to perform for Sharp after Christmas 1909. These ideas for the Dilwyn morris were later published by Ella Leather (Folklore of Herefordshire pp130-132). See Dave Jones ‘The Roots of Welsh Border Morris’ (1988) pp24,25:

Note: During his visit Sharp also recorded dance information from Madley village, 12 miles to the south (Folk Words 2194-6) and from nearby Weobley (FW 2193, 2197-2200). These were all dances for mixed couples rather than 'morris men'.

William Preece was born at Grendon Bishop (9 miles E of Leominster) in July qr 1847 (ref 26-205), 7th child of Francis Preece, stone mason and his wife Mary. William in turn became a mason and he and his wife Hannah settled initially at Monkland (4 miles W of Leominster) in 1871. They had 10 children and moved to Dilwyn in 1895. In the 1911 census at Dilwyn William was a widower, aged 64, a bricklayer. He died January qr 1915 (Leominster 6a 914).

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