Virtual House Concert with George Sansome – Wednesday 27 May – fully booked

Here at Ryburn 3 Step we are trying to keep some activities going under the restrictions imposed by HM Government to combat the spread of COVID-19. We are delighted that George Sansome will be the guest at our first ‘Virtual House Concert’ on Wednesday evening 27 May.


Using the online meeting app Zoom, you will be able to see, listen to, and talk to George from the comfort of your own home as he sings, plays, and talks us through his debut CD album “George Sansome” which will be launched on  24 June. The proceedings will open at 8.30pm for half an hour’s chat with the Ryburn Folk Club regulars, and George will sing, play, and talk from 9.00 to 10.00. For more information please visit our EVENTS page.

George Sansome is a vibrant trad folk singer and guitarist from Worcester.  He has been playing for  over10 years  with the highly acclaimed Granny’s Attic, and has cultivated a deep love of traditional song. and he has come into his own as a singer and accompanist. He was in Mick Ryan’s most recent folk opera “Here At The Fair”, and guested on Pete Morton‘s 2020 album “A Golden Thread”. After three albums with Granny’s Attic and countless gigs across the UK and Europe, George has been gradually carving his own path as an engaging solo performer of traditional music and has assuredly found his own voice. Read more HERE on George’s Website

There is no entry charge to R3S Virtual House Concerts. Many singers and musicians have currently lost a considerable part of their income from live performances and concerts, so we ask you to make a donation (whatever you can afford, guide £5 per person) direct to the performer. You can also visit their website to purchase CD’s and other merchandise. Thank you.

If you would like to join the Virtual House Concert with George Sansome, please register by sending an email to with your name and email address. We will then send you the Zoom meeting ID and password which will allow you to join us on the night.

Places are limited to 25 so please email us without delay to avoid disappointment.

We are planning more ‘Virtual House Concerts’ and ‘Virtual Sessions’ monthly and will announce these when we can.
Virtual House Concerts‘ will take place on Wednesday evenings.
Virtual Sessions‘ with guest performers will take place on Monday evenings as part of the ongoing weekly online tune sessions with the Old Bridge Sessionaires. Click HERE for more information.

In Memoriam – Steve Wagstaff

Steve Wagstaff in 1982

I just heard that Steve Wagstaff (“Waggy”) passed away last Tuesday 5 May. Steve was a White Rose morrisman, musician extraordinaire, clever bloke, beer lover, and probably many other things as well. I played with him in a band from 1978 – 1983 and after those heady days Steve carried on enjoying life in his characteristically outrageous style with a wide circle of friends. RIP Steve Wagstaff.
Andy Day

Virtual session with Tom Kitching

Tom Kitching

Last evening (May the 4th) we tried out using Zoom for a Virtual Session with Tom Kitching who had kindly agreed to act as guinea pig. For 1 hour Tom presented his new book and CD ‘Seasons of Change – Busking England‘, to a small audience of around 18 carefully selected people. He read passages from the book, played a selection of tunes from the CD, and then we had a discussion with him about the project. It was most interesting and enjoyable.

It was a very different experience from the intimate House Concerts we are used to, but given the constraints we are all under it worked very well. Tom had to perform to an audience who weren’t there in person, likening it to a ‘studio’ performance, but fortunately he was able to substitute a large stuffed dinosaur for a real audience so his professionalism shone through.

These are difficult times for musicians and performers who we would normally have booked for our annual programme of Folk Clubs, Dances, House Concerts and Workshops. Virtual Sessions using Zoom are one way in which Ryburn 3 Step thinks it can contribute to helping musicians and performers, at the same time providing music and song that friends and colleagues can enjoy from the comfort of their own homes. We’ll post news of more Virtual Sessions here on our Website, and we hope to ‘see’ you with us online soon!

If you want to support Tom Kitching by buying a copy of his new book and CD ‘Seasons of Change – Busking England’, click HERE. Thank you.

May Morning with Ryburn Longsword

May Day was one of the major festivals of the ancient Celts in Britain, representing the first day of summer, and May Day has been traditionally associated with fun, revelry and fertility. Each year the members of Ryburn Longsword get up early to ‘dance in’ the May at sunrise, but this year we’ve been unable to get together to do this. So here are a selection of photos of ‘socially distanced’ May morning Longsword fun and revelry (it was too cold for fertility).

And a reminder of the good times – this is what we did last year.

Strange times in Old England

Ryburn 3 Step is a ‘Not for profit’ organisation based in Ripponden, West Yorkshire, to support Folk Music, Dance, and Song. We run the monthly Ryburn Folk Club, monthly Barn Dances, and occasional House Concerts and Workshops. We have weekly music, song, and dance groups who perform for local and regional community events and festivals, and every January the Long Company Mummers perform their Street Play to audiences at 4 local venues with all proceeds donated to local charities. Now, because of COVID-19, we are shut down for the duration.


Over the years the Ryburn Folk Club has booked many guests, ranging from well established legends (!) to new and upcoming performers, local, regional, national and international. During the current COVID-19 lockdown in the UK and beyond, many performers have lost their income from performing, and if you would like to (and can) help them, a good way of doing it is to buy their music recordings – Downloads, CD’s, and perhaps other merchandise.

A few of our recent performers are listed below with their website addresses. Ryburn 3 Step also encourages support for our local performers, including Pete Coe, Alice Jones who have done so much for us over the years and whose income comes from gigs now not possible .

Pete Coe:

Alice Jones:

Tom Kitching:

Jack Rutter:

Iona Fyfe:

Granny’s Attic:

The 3 members of Granny’s Attic are also individual performers:

Cohen Braithwaite-Kilcoyne:

George Sansome:

Lewis Wood:

R3S Spring / Summer 2020 programme cancelled

Ryburn 3 Step has cancelled the Spring / Summer 2020 programme until further notice because of the COVID-19 virus.

Saturday 18 April – Barn Dance with Dave Ingledew and the Wakes Band.
Wednesday 29 April – Sarah Matthews and Doug Eunson at the Ryburn Folk Club.
Wednesday 27 May – Cosmotheka;
Wednesday 24 June – George Sansome.

We hope to be able to re-book our guests for a subsequent season

Please check here on our website for latest information or on social media or phone Sue Coe on 01422 822569 if you have any questions. Normal service will be resumed as soon as possible. Thank you.


The English Folk Dance and Song Society has awarded their coveted Gold Badge to Ryburn 3 Step founder member Chris Coe for services to folk music.
 It is awarded to those who have made unique or outstanding contributions to the art or science of folk dance, music or song, and/or those who have given exceptional support in furthering the aims of the Society.

Chris has been a key member of the Ryburn 3 Step team, contributing to the folk club, barn dance, singing group, and the clog dance group for as long as R3S has been in existence. As an artist and designer she was instrumental in designing the distinctive Ryburn Longsword costumes and also painted the Sowerby Bridge Rushcart front cloth for many years.

Outside Ryburn 3 Step, she has been a musician and singer in several ground breaking folk acts including The New Victory Band, Bandoggs, Red Shift, Tiger Moth, The English Country Blues Band, and also performed in duo with Pete Coe, Maggie Holland, Jill Pidd, Annie Dearman and John Adams.

In 2000 she joined the ranks of The National Theatre to dance, sing and play in their six month long touring production of The Good Hope, under the musical direction of John Tams.

On the academic side she has tutored on the folk music degree at Newcastle University and the performance degree at Huddersfield University, and been a tutor much in demand for folk events by The Wren Trust, Folkus and many festivals.

This is a well deserved recognition of what she has achieved over five decades. Heartiest congratulations!

An Independent Folk Development Project in the Ryburn Valley