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Helston Flora



First observed by the authors at Helston on 8th May 1976

Miss Helena Charles, Truro, 1981 (who ran a Celtic dance school in Truro circa 1949, and whose Aunt helped lead the furry until 1913/1914). Thurstan Peter (ed) History Of Cornwall (1906 p411): "On the 8th May in every year is celebrated in Helston the ancient merry making called the Furry or Flora Day; the young people [go] into the country, and return dressed with flowers; then dance through the houses and gardens of the town singing the furry song. Whatever the origin of this festival it has now degenerated into a silly romp." A dance often following the Helston Flora Dance was the 'Coinage Hall Dance' also noted within this archive. DANCE NOTATIONS Formation

Processional dance for two couples (ie Duple Minor)in a line with ladies on the right. Step

'One two three hop' furry dance step Hold

Gentleman holds lady's left hand in his right at (lady's) comfortable shoulder height. Bar A

1 8

All lead forward for 8 steps. B

9 12

Gentlemen change places passing right shoulders and turn opposite lady. 13 16

Gentlemen return to own partners and turn. TUNE/SONG The original tune for this dance is the 'Helston Flora/Furry'. click here to play the midi file click here for the noteworthy file