Tim was born in Hampshire, England, on the edge of
The New Forest. His family had for generations all lived
within 50 miles of where he was born. Singing has
always had an impact on his life. He can remember from
the earliest years his father singing at many work socials
and revue shows.
At school Tim was part of the choir and also took part in
the Gilbert & Sullivan productions. As a teenager in the
1960s he sang the vocals in a local Youth Club band
called “The Ravons” (featuring Ravin' Mad Radford)!
However, it was not until the late 1960s that folk music
became part of his life. His first collaboration was with
guitarist friend John Ode, with whom he auditioned for
Hughie Green's talent show “Opportunity Knocks.” Later
Tim and John formed the Folk Group “Breckenridge”
which won the Hampshire Youth Club's Folk competition.
Most of their material was influenced by popular British
and American folk music.
While singing with Breckenridge Tim met Dave Williams,
a well-known and highly respected folk performer in the
South of England. Dave introduced Tim to unaccompanied singing, playing him the recordings of traditional singer
Harry Cox and bringing to his attention the local folk song collections of George Gardiner from Hampshire and The Hammond Brothers from Dorset. This lit a fire of
enthusiasm under Tim, who began to sing solo at folk
clubs across southern Hampshire.
At the same time, Tim began country dancing and morris dancing again (he had done both as a 9 year old at
school, but not seriously). The folk dancing took place at
a biweekly barn dance at The Haywain Inn in Cadnam,
where he would also occasionally sing a song at the
break. Through this activity he met Alf and Helen Woodall;
Helen later became Tim’s regular harmony singing partner, while Alf joined him in founding The Twynham Morris Men
Dave Williams also persuaded Tim to go to the weekly
folk club held at The Bay Tree Inn in Southampton - the
still famous “Foc's'le Folk Music Club”where he soon
became a resident singer with Dave, Steve & Cheryl Jordan
and Geoff Jerram. Before Tim moved to Oxfordshire in
1973, these five regular Foc's'le singers were recorded by
Forest Tracks on an album of songs from the George
Gardiner collection called “Folk Songs From Hampshire.”
This proved to be such a success that it was later followed
with “Folk Songs From Dorset,” songs from the Hammond Brothers collection.
These two vinyl recordings, plus some additional newly
recorded tracks, are to be reissued as a double CD by
Forest Tracks in June 2005. (www.forest-tracks.co.uk)
The move to Oxfordshire saw some changes in Tim's folk
life. Although singing still continued, morris dancing
became a more central preoccupation, first with Oxford City Morris and then, after meeting John & Chris Leslie, Bryan Sheppard and others, with the newly revived Adderbury
For a while Tim sang regularly at The Prince of Wales
Folk Club, which later became the Banbury Folk Club.
However, morris began to take more and more of his
time and eventually became his only folk activity. By 1981,
when the Banbury Folk Club ended, Tim was only singing
at morris events or occasionally in the local pub. At this
time he also began dancing with the revived Kirtlington
Morris, a team he had originally taught, and with the
occasional touring team Duns Tew Morris. In addition he
helped in the formation of Bloxham Morris, primarily for
his daughter Catherine, after his son Michael joined the Adderbury Morris Men.
In 1990, Kirtlington Morris visited the USA and danced at
The Marlboro Morris Ale, the premier morris event in North America. This resulted in a big change in Tim's life when
he met musician and dancer Jan Elliott, founder of
Ha'penny Morris of Boston. Visits to North America
increased, including trips to Pinewoods Camp in Plymouth, Massachusetts where Tim sang and taught morris.
All this finally culminated in Tim's moving to Woods Hole,
MA in 1997. Once there he joined the Boston-based
Pinewoods Morris Men and, through Jan, became involved
with Thames Valley International of London, Ontario,
Canada. He and Jan also formed the 3rd incarnation
of a morris team in Woods Hole called “Woods Hole
Village Morris.” However age and hard pavements finally
put an end to his active dancing days, so to stay involved
Tim has now come back to singing.
While settling in his new home Tim sang briefly in a band
called “First Light” with Jan on concertina and fiddler
Jacquie Fehon. He now sings and plays percussion with “Beggar's Description,” a band specializing in music of the British Isles and Celtic countries. The group includes Jan
on English concertina, recorder, pennywhistle and crumhorn, and former Woods Hole Village Morris cohorts Barbara
Blair on fiddle and Ron Geering on Anglo concertina, hurdy
gurdy and hammered dulcimer.
The solo album “Home From Home” came about from
Tim's desire to sing more, having sprung from a
discussion on the subject with morris dancer, singer and songwriter Ian Robb who owns the recording label “Fallen
Ian is a superb singer who performs with the Canadian
harmony group “Finest Kind” as well as “JIIG,” a five-piece
band from Ottawa, which also includes “Home From
Home” sound engineer, and multi-instrumentalist James Stephens. These two friends have been of invaluable
assistance in turning Tim's CD project into a reality, and
they deserve special thanks, along with the graphic
designer Paul Brierley.
When not singing, Tim spends most of his time either on
the Golf Course or in the Kitchen, where Regional Italian is