Ebor Morris started in 1974 when a bunch of young people in York from Rowntrees, the Railway, and the University had too many beers at the Bay Horse Folk Club one night, and decided to form a morris team to give them some exercise between drinking pints of lubricant.
The first dance out was on May 1st 1974 outside the Lord Collingwood in Poppleton. After some early media coverage on Play School for the BBC (through the Round window), Ebor Morris (named after Eboracum, the Roman name for York) soon got a reputation for being a lively and fun morris team. The first use of the term 'slightly notorious' is lost in the midst of time, but could be due to refusing to dance at a John Smiths pub, dancing backwards up Grassington High Street, tap dancing on the ceiling, or disrupting formal feasts by throwing bread rolls and firing peas out of the sides staff of office, a bicycle pump with ribbons on it.
Ebor Morris appeared on the Eurovision Song Contest in 1982 (click here and fast forward to 5:56), on BBC Children in Need, and famously on Radio York. They made the national papers when they disrupted a 4 star dinner in the Station Hotel, when they unknowingly danced in the room above the ballroom, causing the chandeliers to clank a bit - The headline 'Cloggies spoil 4 star dinner' was above the misquote from the Squire at the time, John Cranford-Linch, that 'we dance to assert our masculinity',
Once famous for their interpretation of the Longborough tradition, the side now performs dances from a number of traditions including Adderbury, Bucknell, Ducklington, Bampton and the little known Horsham. They are also proud to perform the traditional Escrick Longsword Dance from a village just east of York - in the early days they were privileged to meet two of the schoolboys who had performed the dance in front of Cecil Sharp when he came on his collecting visits.