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Kent Ceilidhs

Kent Ceilidhs

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What is a Ceilidh?

Ceilidh (pronounced KAY-LEE) is just an old Gaelic word for a visit or a party. We use it now to mean an evening of dance. There are Scottish Ceilidhs, Irish Céilís and English Ceilidhs, sometimes known as eCeilidhs. You can read lots more about eCeilidhs at eceilidh.org.uk. This page is all about English Ceilidhs in Kent. You can see some sample ceilidh videos below.

When is the next Ceilidh?

Check out the Events at the Kent Ceilidhs Facebook Page and Share them!

What is the difference between a Barn Dance and a Ceilidh?

Not a lot! Usually, when people have a Barn Dance to celebrate a wedding or a party, then the people who attend are there for the wedding or the party, not for the dancing. But if the dance is called a Ceilidh it is usually aimed at people who just want to have fun dancing!

We use the same dances, but do them with more energy, style and stepping. But don't worry, you don't have to do the stepping - walking is fine, and if you want to try it then most of it is just skipping to the music.

Do I need to know how to dance?

Abolutely not! All Ceilidhs are beginner-friendly. The caller teaches each dance and then calls it while you are dancing, so you don't even have to remember the sequence. These dances are designed for people with two left feet. They are for fun!

Do I need a partner?

No, you don't need to come with a partner; everyone dances with everyone and we make sure that no-one is left sitting out. Lots of our dancers come by themselves; ceilidh dancers are very sociable so you will feel part of the crowd straight away. All you need to bring are some comfortable shoes (low heels are good!) and a smile!
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Oxfolk on Tour: Folk Weekend Oxford 2011 The Serendipity Band #2 + caller Barry Goodman


This is The Willow Tree: A great dance written by Hugh Rippon in the 1960s, with two Strip the Willows at the same time.

Sidmouth Festival - The Late Night Extra - Music by Chalktown - 8th August 2014


This is Nottingham Swing, a dance from Northamptonshire!

La Russe at a Hothfield Ceilidh - 2017


This is La Russe, a square dance from North-East England.

What is the Kent Ceilidh Consortium?

The Kent Ceilidh Consortium is a group of musicians, callers and dancers who want there to be more dancing in Kent. So we are working together to spread the word. You can help us by telling people about this page, and by Following our Facebook Page: fb.com/KentCeilidhs. Follow it, Like it and Share it. Then please click on Events on the Facebook Page and Share those as well. These dances are always more fun when there are more people at them, so please spread the word!

If you are running a Ceilidh in Kent, aimed at dancers, just for the fun of dancing, not for any other reason, then please e-mail the details to me (John Sweeney) and I will add it to the Kent Ceilidhs Facebook Page as an Event. All you have to do in return is tell anyone you know who might be interested in dancing about the Kent Ceilidhs Facebook Page.