The Loose Knit Band

Welcome to the Loose Knit Band Home Page

Page last edited Wednesday 28th July 2010 15:10 BST

Webmaster: Martin Hughes


The Loose Knit Band was originally formed from the musicians who played for the Loose Women dance team, taking the name from the village of Loose near Maidstone Kent. Our aim is to promote the playing of folk music wherever we can.

The founder members of the band were Bert Crittenden, Bill Francis, Martin McKenna, Gordon Newton, Ivan North, Terry Pearson and Terry Reville. Their activities were not simply confined to playing with the Loose Women and they continue to play for Motley Morris and Stockport Morris , who are heavily involved in the Rochester Sweeps Festival and Rochester Dickensian Weekend when they can found playing in the vicinity of Ye Arrow and Jolly Knight pubs.

A forceful presence within the Loose Knit Band has been “Myrtle the Double Bass”, accompanied by her owner Terry Pearson. In 2010 Myrtle made a major impression at the Devon County Show who added her story to the BBC History of the World. The BBC article may be found  here .

On some occasions the band were short of musicians (or required extra musicians) and some of those who helped out were co-opted as members of the band by association these being: Judith Armstrong, Jackie Chiplin, Will Chiplin, Cherie Dennis, Andy Dennis, Bob Ellis, Andy Hamilton, Martin Hughes, Chris Malkin, Geoff Maskell, Nicole Mac, Pete Mac and Dick Sutton. Other musicians who have made noteworthy contributions are Dave, Jan, Ann, Chris, and Liz (from Exmoor Border), Heather Holt, Pete Hughes, Hilary, John and Nick (from Wiltshire), Jenny and Suzanne (from Crook Morris), Robin Watson and Keith Yendell. The membership is now spread around the country from Kent through to the West Country and as far north as the Shetland Isles and members of the band now provide support for the Sidmouth Steppers dance team.

The band also lead music sessions at festivals and our high spot of the year is to lead the nightly music sessions at the Sidmouth Sailing Club during Sidmouth Folk Week , when we are also referred to as “Terry Pearson And Friends”. Under the guidance of Terry Pearson, Bill Francis and Martin Hughes we have continued to make many friends and we hold a reunion for them in Sidmouth near to Easter. Many of our members and friends also host their own music sessions in the parts of the country where they live.

Other festivals (apart from these already mentioned) where members may be found are Chippenham and Upton-upon-Severn where one of our members holds the record for maintaining the longest possible session to be held in the King’s Head pub on a Saturday! Activities are not merely confined to the UK with one or two of our members turning up as far afield as Reims in France and Ypres and Namur in Belgium.

Absent Friends

As time passes our members become absent friends. It was decided not to highlight them as absent but we remember them and always miss the valuable contributions that they have made to the band over the years. Their memories are maintained by keeping their music alive during our sessions.