Parish Notes

Hello there!

This is a page where we will post updates of club news and information, the term Parish Notes  is often used to ask on club nights if anyone has news of forthcoming events or happenings, any announcements you wish to see posted will be considered..


Mary Heron

Members of The White Hart Folk Club are greatly saddened to hear of the death, on 27th August, 2019, of its oldest regular member, Mary Rosalie Heron, at the age of 96. Mary and her husband Giles spent their married lives teaching in the Midlands, then farming in Glaisdale, retiring to Glaisdale village itself. They loved folk music.  Mary Heron, nee Barran,  began singing at home as a child in Sussex, then helped to set up  a folk club at Oxford University. Both she and Giles were stalwart members of Whitby Folk Club which was run for many years at The Plough, Whitby, by Jim and Mu Wilkinson. When they moved the club to The Black Bull at Ugthorpe and then to The White Hart at Mickleby, where it now is, Giles and Mary continued to support it with enthusiasm.Many people will remember the memorable night we had with Giles and Mary a few years ago when they were special guests at the club. Throughout the evening they performed 33 songs and gave their fee to the Bopal charity, and even though Mary was in her nineties she did not sit down once.Club members will never forget Mary – a woman of charm and great personality.  Together, she and Giles always made the folk club more special when they were in attendance.The folk club will not be the same without Mary. Members will miss her lovely soprano voice, her wisdom, her wide experience and her beauty, and will not forget her.

A service was held to commemorate Marys life on the 17th of September at St Thomas’s Church Glaisdale. The service was well attended with anecdotes and memories read out by the attending clergy. The church choir was in fine voice singing a selection of hymns including “Brother James’ Air” and “Dona Nobilis Pacem” (Give us Peace”). There was also a rendition of a few of Marys favourite songs by White Hart Folk Club regulars and also tunes played by I believe Giles’s niece, Phil Batty and David Moss.

This is the wonderful club banner that one of our regular members, Beth Burrows, has made for us entirely by hand and is displayed each and every club night. Thanks Beth from all of the club members for creating this stunning work of Art. Worthy of display at the Durham Miners Gala. 

Club Banner


17/6/17     Giles and Mary night was another success, it was attended by some old friends who travelled to see their evening, Barrie and Ingrid Temple from Newcastle and Dr Steve Black from Cumbria renewed their acquaintance with Giles and Mary.

Also present was Maggie Gee, who brought along Miriam Backhouse who now resides in South Africa. Miriam had the club up performing a traditional song and dance similar in style to the Ladysmith Black Mambazo Band.

South Africans know her as Miriam Erasmus, a folk singer extraordinaire, who has earned the title of “African Rose” in the UK where she has performed as Miriam Backhouse for more than forty years.

Pictures may be viewed in the Photo Gallery section of the website.

27/5/17     Another good night at the club, 18 in, great songs and performances, had a few new faces, Carol from Greatham and friends from Leicester, Mick and Andrea who sang and played great, hope to see you again.

21/5/17 Good night at the club last night, 18 singers, two visitors from Maryland USA, Yvonne Howard and Lois Mikkila, Beth’s relations, enjoyed themselves and were made most welcome, Had some great singers and players, Ian Stewart and Paul Mason performing on their guitars and singing, also had a rendition from Rachel Crackett (Wilkinson) on her melodeon(?) which she is learning to play and doing well at it! Also nice to see hubby Steve and Mum Mu who also performed for us, Keep coming everybody, nice to see old and new faces.


On November 28th 2017 the club will celebrate its 25th Birthday,  the club owes it’s existence to two stalwarts of the folk music scene, Jim and Mu Wilkinson with the help of Alan King, The opening night of the club was Saturday 28th November 1992 when “Th’ Antique Roadshow” were the guests.

News about Mary after her recent hip injury.

Mary Heron

SHE’S BACK! And in fine fettle, Mary and Giles returned to the club, business as usual, Both Mary and Giles sang again as though nothing had occurred,  good to see them both.


Good night at the club, Mc’d by Colin Mather, song register filled in by his good lady Heather, some new songs/tunes performed by those present and a good deal of banter among like minded folk, Dawn sang one of Graeme Miles’s songs ‘Shores of Old Blighty’       Asked Albert (The Oracle) Elliot if he knew any other versions that Graeme may have written, surprised me by stating he only knew one other version ( Albert can usually come up with several alternatives) Once again, good night, good company, please keep coming to one of the best little folk clubs in the North.


Club members meeting last night, eight members present, discussed variety of topics which will be available to study when  written up by Ailsa.


Another smashing night at the club, 20 attendees singing and playing some well known and some new material, we had some new visitors, Pete and Barbara Snape from Chorley in Lancashire on holiday in Whitby. Excellent playing from Pete and bright powerful singing from Barbara, visit us again Please! Also another new guy, didn’t catch his name but I’m sure Ailsa will update me. Some pics of Barbara and Pete on the Gallery section, not great quality, had to take them on my old mobile.


Dear Everyone,

Will you please all note that it was decided at last week’s folk club meeting that the folk club will from next Saturday (18th) begin half an hour early at 8pm – so 7.30pm for a prompt 8pm start. This is to allow more singers to get on when the club is busy and will allow a little more time for the raffle.  Please pass the word round. I am sure Mick will put the news on the new website.
Great night last night – 20 in. Some really good stuff played.
Rebecca, hope you get well soon.
Another good night at the club, New 8pm start and went round the room twice and held the raffle all before 9.45pm, 19 in with some holiday visitors who had never been in a folk club before, As they were leaving stated that they enjoyed the experience.