Next Practice: 5 Oct at The Sun Inn, Swallwell, 8p.m.
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The Dances

The Newbiggin Dance


There was a rapper side in Newbiggin-by-the-Sea at the turn of the century, but the Newbiggin dance performed by Sallyport is that of a later team in the town, founded in 1920 by Billy Clark, a former member of the famous Westerhope team near Newcastle which dominated the first three years of the Newcastle Tournaments with their fast, acrobatic style.

Although Billy Clark invented new figures and made several changes, 'so as to make a different dance,' the Newbiggin dance still contains some of the old Westerhope figures, and goes a long way to reproducing Westerhope's crowd-pleasing style.

The Newbiggin dance is one of the quickest and slickest of the traditional rapper dances, and was the first dance to be performed by Sallyport, who following years of maintaining a high standard are now generally regarded as the de facto guardians of the tradition. The dance is also popular with other revival sides, especially those founded by Sallyport members, such as Stevenage Sword.