As quintessentially homegrown as a game of cricket or a plate of fish-and-chips, Morris dancing is one of Englands most ancient roots traditions. And yet to your average man on the street, ... See full synopsis »


Rob Curry, Tim Plester


Tim Plester





Credited cast:
Billy Bragg ... Self
MyAnna Buring ... Voice of the Will-O'-Wisps (voice)
Chris Leslie Chris Leslie ... Self
The Adderbury Village Morris Men The Adderbury Village Morris Men ... Themselves
Tim Plester ... Self
Donald Sumpter ... Voice of Creation (voice)


As quintessentially homegrown as a game of cricket or a plate of fish-and-chips, Morris dancing is one of Englands most ancient roots traditions. And yet to your average man on the street, its seen as little more than a national joke. And a bad national joke at that. Something to ridicule. Something to be embarrassed about.

Things have always been a little different for actor and filmmaker Tim Plester. Tim hails from a family of Morris dancers, and was raised in the quiet North Oxfordshire village of Adderbury; a community with a proud and fertile dancing history stretching back through the centuries. The tinkling of the shin-bells is part of his heritage. Part of his legacy. Part of his very folklore. And yet, despite the connections, Tim doesn't dance. Never has

A heartfelt docu-ballad in praise of birthplace, bloodline and rural brotherhood, WAY OF THE MORRIS follows Tim on a deeply personal journey from the barleyfields of his childhood to the killing fields of The Somme, as he ...

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For these are the lands of my forefathers. And these are the dances of my ancestors.

User Reviews

'As English as Cricket'...
11 August 2012 | by tim-764-291856See all my reviews

Quite why this little docu film should find its home on Sky Arts is odd/interesting and thinking that it'd be so specialist that no-one would have reviewed it online, I found it varied, with a few on Amazon but less here.

Now, as a photographer I often get to photo-document traditional fairs and local events and my home-town does have its own Morris group. I don't consider Morris-ers any more weird or different to anyone else at these celebrations but the subject is one that is seen to be way too uncool to actually quiz its protagonists about directly. So, this neat little offering from film-maker Tim Plester and Robin Curry seemed ideal to balance that.

Already receptive and open-minded, I found the approach and structure - and indeed opinions - interesting, wide and fair and the people human. Did I just write that? Yes, of course, I did and when Tim talks of groups such as Fairport Convention greatly helping to revive the cause, my actually having seen Steeleye Span live comes uncomfortably close to that of Fairport!

That is the delicious and tangible truth about it all - we (some less, some more) are all connected to traditional folklore and its music and dances. Morris just so happens to be the nearest - and oldest surviving - that England has, so either accept it and appreciate it, or... (censored!)

Most of us also like to join and be part of a social group and Morris just happens to be one of them. There's an undoubted attractiveness about any group obviously enjoying themselves and we find ourselves becoming envious. Left-wing singer/songwriter and ultra-cool social commentator Billy Bragg adds some very welcome and well balanced philosophy on the matter, too.

All in all, this compact 70 minute, well-photographed documentary film sets out what it means to. To educate, entertain and show us, Morris, or not, the many facets of this solid dependable movement, for which I personally appreciate for having seen.

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Release Date:

9 September 2011 (UK) See more »

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Fifth Column Films See more »
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