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Traditional Music Day, Museum of East Anglian Life

On the 31st August, Pat Pickles brought along her remarkable collection of Jig Dolls as well as over three thousand postcards. The cards were divided into box files with titles such as, Customs and Traditions, Concertina Bands, Clog and Step Dancers, Well Dressing and Myths and Legends. Collected over many years with her late husband, Rennie Pickles, the cards are a unique record of the way in which folk song and dance and seasonal events have been recorded and disseminated across the UK. In 1894 the Royal Mail gave permission for picture postcards to be sent through the post. Many of Pat's earliest cards are dated around the turn of the century but continue on into the 1970's. Shown here are many of those found in the Customs and Traditions box.

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Pat also displayed her collection of over fifty Jig Dolls, allowing people to use them and enjoy making them 'jig' along to live music played on the accordion by the musician Liam Robinson, one of the guest artists this year for Traditional Music Day. These dolls, usually wooden but sometimes made of tin plate, have been a popular form of entertainment for many hundreds of years. Pat and Rennie wrote a book in 1988 called Jig dolls: "The Brightest of Entertainers". Pat is currently collaborating with Katie Howson, Co-director of the East Anglian Traditional Music Trust and organiser of the Traditional Music Day, on a second book hopefully due out shortly.


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