Career to date.......
Having initially worked in public libraries before attending library college, I obtained an honours degree in librarianship (specialising in music and folk music within that module) prior to taking up the post of assistant-librarian at the Vaughan Williams Memorial (VWML), the library and archive of the English Folk Dance & Song Society at Cecil Sharp House in London. That was in December 1979. By 1981 I had become the head librarian, managing a multi-media library and archive which is regarded today as England's national folk arts collection.
During this time I have been involved in the organisation of over 130 lectures and talks on a variety of folk arts related topics, the organisation of conferences and musical events involving the likes of Billy Bragg, Shirley Collins, Martin and Eliza Carthy, Norma Waterson and the Copper Family, editing a number of publications (written and audio) and written and presented several TV and radio broadcasts for the BBC , including a Radio 4 Archive Hour about fieldworker Doc Rowe in 2006 and consulting and appearing in Jools Holland: London Calling on BBC 2. More recently, I have been involved in two successful grant applications to the Heritage Lottery Fund, amounting to approx. £750K , achieved designated status for VWML through the Museum, Libraries and Archives scheme (MLA), and have given talks at venues all over England and at the Library of Congress, Washington D.C.
I have compiled and edited several books for the English Folk Dance and Song Society, including:
I have also compiled and edited a series of audio recordings, including:
More recently, I contributed an introductory essay and sourced images for the British Film Institute DVD Here's a health to the barley mow : a century of folk customs and ancient rural games (2011).
But most prominent of all has been masterminding the launch of online resources such as the Cecil Sharp Diaries and The Full English digital archive, the world's largest free digital resource for English traditional folk music, dance and customs.
An appraisal of my work and career can be read in the downloadable file on the right, published in English Dance & Song magazine (vol 76, no 3, Autumn 2014, pp. 28-30)
I remain on the editorial board of Folk Music Journal.
Receiving the BBC Radio 2 Roots Award in 2012. The citation was written and presented by Lee Hall, author of Billy Elliott.