2014 Wellington Region 1920s Ball

Memories of an elegant evening

Going back in time to the Roaring Twenties, groups of elegant dancers entered a beautifully decorated ballroom ready for an evening of dance and friendship: flappers in dresses decorated with beadwork, sequins or embroidery, feathers in their hair and long swirling strings of pearls; men in striped jackets, white trousers and boater hats or resplendent in black Prince Charlie jackets and kilts.

Loralee Hyde and Rod and Kristin Downey arrive at the 1920s Ball

Wellington Region President at the time, Philippa Pointon, says the committee decided to have a 1920s ball to celebrate the decade in which the RSCDS was formed.

Thanks so much to the committee of Melva Waite, Kath Ledingham, Eileen South and Philippa, who was also MC for the evening, for organising this grand affair on 5 July 2014.

The ‘1920s’ committee: Melva Waite, Kath Ledingham, Eileen South and Philippa Pointon

As dancers arrived, they were offered punch by three smartly dressed bartenders; Kevin Lethbridge, Pat Waite and Peter Warren.

Ready to serve the punch: Kevin Lethbridge, Pat Waite and Peter Warren

Everyone had the opportunity to pose in their finery in a gold photo booth, made especially for the purpose by John Gregory. Thanks to John for pulling together all the fantastic decorations for the evening, with the photo booth continuing to feature at formal occasions including the Johnsonville 50 Golden Years Celebration in 2016.

Johnsonville ‘1920s’ dancers: Aline and John Homes, Rod and Kristin Downey with Sono Barnes in front, Malcolm Leitch, Désirée Patterson and Pat Reesby

Lively music from Aileen Logie, John Smith, Peter Elmes and Terry Bradshaw (with some sets containing 1920s tunes cleverly arranged by Peter), got toes tapping and dancers on to the floor throughout the evening.

MC Philippa Pointon with Aileen Logie, John Smith, Peter Elmes and Terry Bradshaw

Old favourites on the programme included The Sailor, Cadgers in Canongate and Sugar Candie. Dances published by the RSCDS in the 1920s were represented by Flowers of Edinburgh (Book 1, 1924) and Blue Bonnets (Book 3, 1926).

Johnsonville dancers: Kristin & Rod Downey, John Homes and Loralee Hyde

“A great night was had by all”, Philippa says. “I don’t think the Charleston had ever been played on an accordion before!”

Check out these photos for more memories of a fabulous evening of fun and friendship with elegant costumes abounding and memorable dancing and music

Watch Pat Reesby’s video of Village Reel below

Loralee Hyde
20 January 2021

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