Watercress Line Morris Day 2004 / Alton French Market

Once again we took part in the Watercress Line's Morris Day - displays of Morris cars of all ages, plus Morris Dancing up and down the line.

We were at Alton in good time for the 11:20 departure to Alresford, time for a dance or three on the platform, next to the gleaming coaches

but someone's technology was not playing ball...

A final spin before boarding

Up to Medstead and Four Marks, hauled by a GWR-liveried 0-6-0 "Collett" goods loco assisted by Class 33 Meteor in fragonset livery - a "Slim Jim" capable of operating the tight tunnels of the Hastings line. We had to wait at the signals, but when the all clear came, the driver blew the whistle with a jet of steam, answered by the diesel's horn.

Here's the aforementioned diesel (which we left behind at Ropley)

And here's the "Collett" at Alresford (it arrived from the South Devon Railway on 25th June this year).

That's enough of trains for now - were here to dance, in the station yard with the Morris cars.

And we're met by Hobos, who dance turn-and-turn-about with us.

It's great to have enough dancers to do Alton Morris - with a little help from Rosie

it's just one of those dances

Hobos were excellent - good dancing, wonderful music, not just noise and bravado as border sides can be

The other Morris ... cars

Back to action

The trombone adds that je ne sais quoi to the music

We do our best though!

The weather cleared enough to let the hankies fly at the end of the street dance

The cloggies dances to Dale's sung accompaniment

And so, back up the line to Alton, this time hauled by West Country Class Bodmin, and old friend.

Like a dream disappearing into the mist ... we have to hurry off to the Market Square to dance

But there was no one in the Market Square so, after a brief refreshment break, we moved down to the High Street in the middle of the French Market. In light rain, we danced Alton Morris again - you can't have too much of a good thing!

Hobos take a turn

Followed by Beau Knot

Then it's Knickerbocker Glory

Followed by Anstey Mill

The day concluded with the Rose

Which ended with a Mexican Wave - maybe people were thinking about tonight's football!!

So, a very enjoyable day out, despite the damp weather.