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European union to mark Norwich Morris dancers’ anniversary

Kemp's Men Morris Group at Norwich Station. 
Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Kemp's Men Morris Group at Norwich Station. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Archant Norfolk 2016

The United Kingdom might be turning its back on the European Union, but a group of Norfolk Morris dancers this weekend celebrated a major milestone with continental counterparts.

The Spätlese dance and folklore group from Germany join the Kemp's Men Morris Group at Norwich Station. 
Picture: ANTONY KELLYThe Spätlese dance and folklore group from Germany join the Kemp's Men Morris Group at Norwich Station. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Morris group Kemp’s Men decided to celebrate the 60th anniversary of their formation by joining forces with a visiting company - the Spätlese dance and folklore group from the village of Winningen in western Germany.

The colourful groups danced at Norwich railway station yesterday morning before catching a train to Cromer for more celebrations around the seaside town.

They were back in Norwich today for performances at the Bishop’s Garden, which held an open day, in support of the Norfolk Lymphoma Group.

And tomorrow, the two groups are set for a lunchtime performance in Walberswick and afternoon dances in Southwold.

Peter Mayne, from Kemp’s Men, said the long term friendship between the two dance sides was forged through Norwich being twinned with the German city of Koblenz and the personal encouragement of Waltraud Jarrold.

Mrs Jarrold, MBE, who hails from Winningen, is president of the Norfolk and Norwich Koblenz Friendship Association.

Mr Mayne said: “This is a big birthday for Kemp’s and what better way to enjoy this than dancing and making merry with our guests?”

Norwich voted remain in the recent referendum and Mr Mayne said it was appropriate a celebration involving English and German dancers should start there - with Dutch train company Abellio then taking them to Cromer.

He said: “In our fine city which recently voted ‘remain’, we saw the very best of European cooperation and friendship - English, German and Dutch in partnership!”

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