The naked truth about Morris dancing in Bexley

13:12 12 October 2012

The Gong Scourers

The Gong Scourers

Archant

Forget all you know about Morris dancing. Toss out the bells, discard the braces and prepare for the lesser known, wilder side of traditional folk dancing.

Glenna DemeterGlenna Demeter

The Gong Scourers are a Crayford based troupe who follow the ‘‘border’’ side of Morris dancing – with an emphasis on individuality and self-expression.

Usually dressed in all-black, this Gothic looking lot continue to subvert conventions by releasing a naked calendar in aid of charity.

With little other than bandanas, boots and stockings to cover their modesty, the Scourers aim to raise £5,000 for the Alzheimer’s Society in a show of heart – albeit a black one.

Group member Glenna Demeter, 52, is spearheading the project after she received great support from the charity when battling for care for her father, Bert, who suffers from dementia.

She said: “I was taking part in a project where we were asking to think of ideas that we couldn’t achieve, so I thought of a naked calendar.

“It was difficult twisting their arms but I just kept saying ‘I’m doing it anyway, so you might as well be in it’.

“Alzheimer’s Society have been so good in helping to get my dad the care he needs.”

Most assumed Glenna was joking up until the moment they had to strip for the shoot in an eerie graveyard on April Fool’s Day.

The group are active between November and May each year and have been so sought after this summer that they have had little time to focus on their raunchy fundraising project.

With 500 printed and ready, Glenna added: “We’ve just been so busy that I’ve hardly had time to sell any but hopefully they’ll all be gone by Christmas and if there’s more demand, we’ll just print up some more.”

Her husband Chris, also a member of The Gong Scourers, explains that the group have always had a slightly “unconventional” side, but their look has been an ever evolving process.

Named after medieval toilet-cleaners, the dancers formerly wore masks and more traditional hats before opting for a punk-inspired look.

“We always dressed in black and white”, Chris said. “But we decided about 10 years ago to update our appearance. We changed our hats to bandanas and our masks to sunglasses.”

“Border dancing is quite undisciplined, you can write your own dances and we are always prepared to push the boundaries, as you can see in our calendar.”

Chris and his fellow Scourers recently featured at the Bexley Beer Festival and practise twice a month at the Crayford Drop In Centre from 8.30pm.

The calendar, featuring 15 of the group’s men and women, is priced at £10, with £7.50 of every sale going straight to the Alzheimer’s Society.

Those looking for an alternative Christmas gift or simply a flash of flesh can visit www.gongscourers.co.uk to order a copy.

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest London news

Tuesday, May 31, 2016
JD Wetherspoon visits will involve a bit of political chat this month (Picture: JD Wetherspoon)

JD Wetherspoon has cracked open a can of controversy after announcing all 920 ‘Spoons’ pubs will be serving brews on Brexit beer mats.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Competitions

Win a BMW 1 series

There are fewer cars currently on the market more stylish and exciting than the BMW. Known all over the world as one of the best car manufacturers, the BMW is renowned for sleek designs and fantastic high quality workmanship.

Read more
Kindle 7 inch tablet

Are you looking for a brand new gadget to help you stay connected on the go and make that long journey home a bit more entertaining? Look no further. MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Kindle Fire 7” Display Tablets! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Read more

Latest Tech News

Transport