The Guizer Press
Article type: Correspondence
Norman Peacock prefaces the five Guizer Press folk play booklets which are now online.
Inspired by his realisation that the Ordish collection had lain almost undisturbed for some fifty years, Alex.Helm was always keen to see information in print. Certainly some texts had been published in the books by Tiddy and Chambers in the 1920s and 1930s and with the geographical survey which had been published by the Folklore Society as a result of his work along with Christopher Cawte and myself in the 1960s, but a great deal of local information and detailed texts remained unpublished.
As a result he and Christopher created the Guizer Press to produce booklets on specific aspects of traditional performances, not only of the Play but also of Dance and related customs. Being a teacher of printing and related handicrafts Alex was in an ideal position to deal with the practical as well as the literary aspects of this enterprise. In order to emphasise the often regional nature of the information (and to produce booklets of a convenient size), he embarked on compiling publications by county. The first of these was for his "home county" of Cheshire which was published in 1968, the second was for the adjacent county of Staffordshire and the third for Northamptonshire. Unfortunately his sudden death in 1970 intervened and, although he had printed much of the Staffordshire book and some of the Northamptonshire one, the former was not published until 1984 and the latter has remained unpublished.