Who's this Ron Shuttleworth?
And why did he start collecting?
Photo courtesy of Marco Camarotti,
Born in Sheffield, 1930, and brought up in Hathersage, NE Derbyshire.
After varied career settled in Coventry in 1960 & married Jean (1927-1998)
Interests include camping, and singing traditional and self-penned songs.
I got involved in mumming when I saw Morris 'beasts' at folk festivals and decided in 1966 to make one of my own. I chose a Ram because of my connection with Derbyshire.
I showed it off at a meeting of the Camping Club Folk Group, where someone knew about the Derby Ram or Tup play and remembered enough of it for us to perform it there
At the time I was helping to run the Coventry Folk Workshop and after some research I showed them my 'Tupsie' and enquired if anyone was interested in performing the play. This was the start of Coventry Mummers - 1966, ongoing.
Over a period of several years I had acquired various magazines etc. with pieces about Mumming. One day I was looking for a particular item and came across several articles that I had forgotten about. At the time I had unrestricted access to a Xerox photocopier and so decided to copy all my mumming material and to arrange it into some sort of order
When visiting various libraries I came across more material which I started to copy to add to an expanding collection. After a while I started actively searching for new material, and eventually decided to try and collect everything that had been written on the subject. (rash fool !!)
I like this quote from Thomas Fairman Ordish's third Paper, English Folk Drama II-
In time it became evident that the thing was growing into more than a nice personal collection and could be developing a wider importance. I became concerned about its future, and offered it to the Archives of the Morris Ring, who seemed at the time to be the only national folk body whose future could be relied upon.
Since Jean's death, the Collection has become my sole reason for living, and if I can help anyone out there they can be assured that I view such assistance as one of the prime objectives of this work.
Introducing the Folk Plays of England
So You Want to Start Mumming- Options Pitfalls and Suggestions
Constructing a Hobby Animal: Mainly For Morris Dancers
The Fool in Primitive & Modern Societies
Review : J.Parle 'The Mummers of Wexford', Drinagh, Author. 2001
Review : Aughakillymaude Community Mummers 'Mummers, Masks and Mischief :', Feenish Productions. 2005
Starting up with Coventry Mummers: The early years from 1966
Audio & Video
St George and the Dragon
Keeping Mummers traditions alive
Traditional Drama Research Group, Contact: email@example.com