Bob Pegg words ~ music ~ place contact: catsback@gmail.com This page is a bit of an indulgence, but I’ve always loved photographs. My Dad was a keen photographer, as was his father, so I’ve inherited boxes of the things. Don’t forget that you can enlarge them all by clicking on them. My Dad’s father, Wilfred Joseph Pegg, was  sometimes known as “our Wilf”, but mostly as “Dard”,  a nickname he acquired while still in his pram. A lace  designer by trade, he was an enthusiastic violinist  who played in local Gilbert and Sullivan productions,  May Festivals, whatever was on the go. He also sang  bass in a gospel quartet. I still have the fiddle that  he’s holding here, in his teens, not long before the  outbreak of World War I which he spent interned as a  conscientious objector. HYT Raven Junior Folk Orchestra Lincolnshire Donkey The Folksinger Peter and Jackie Beresford Alec Williamson at Loch Broom Harold as Time The boot that was struck by lightning With Nick Strutt in a Whitby boatyard Mr Fox Both sides of my Dad’s family were  keen on music and light opera. The  Midlands lace town, Long Eaton,  where they lived, and where I was  born, was awash with amateur  shows. On the right of this picture is  my great uncle Harold Pegg as  Time, in a 1938 production of The  Arcadians. The beard isn’t his, but  the family eyebrows definitely are. My Mum and Dad when  they were courting in the  late 1930s. How old do you  reckon they are? These are  Mum’s own teeth, all of  which she had taken out for  her 18th birthday, so she  was probably seventeen,  and he would have been  twenty. Here I am with my Dad’s grandfather Joseph  Pegg, early 1945. Joe was the classic Victorian  self-made businessman, starting his working life  as a twisthand - a machine worker - in a lace  factory, then joining up with a pal to first rent,  then buy, a single machine, gradually building up to owning their own factory, Phoenix Mills. He  became a town councillor, and stalwart of the  Methodist Chapel. On a Monday morning he  would visit the factory floor to reprimand workers  who weren’t in Chapel the previous day.  Some of my most vivid early memories are of  holidays on the Lincolnshire coast. We used to  stay with Mr and Mrs Hodgson on their farm, a  few miles inland from Sutton-on-Sea. There  was no electricity, and the water was from the  pump. In the mornings I would ride with Mr  Hodgson on the cart driven by Dolly the pony to  deliver the milk. This photograph was probably  taken in Mablethorpe. The iconic donkey ride is  still available in some seaside places. Wilf Pegg with fiddle Mum’s parents, Violet Daft and Ernest Arthur  Dakin, lived in the village of Draycott, a few miles  east of Derby. I spent a lot of time with them  when I was young. I remember: the best chips  ever, made in a pan; walks through the fields,  over stiles and by the banks of the river to  Grandad’s allotment; harvest moons; and Uncle  Keith playing the New Orleans jazz, which he  loved so much, on the record player. The small  person is Clancy, my very first daughter. I got the folk bug in the late 50s. After Burl Ives and Harry  Belafonte, most influential, on  vinyl, was The Kingston Trio,  and, on the telly, Robin Hall and  Jimmy McGregor. I teamed up  with Richard Jones, a pal from  school, and every Sunday  evening we went to sing in the  Nottingham Folk Workshop in  the Co-op Educational Centre. In 1966 I took a degree in English at Leeds  University, and began working in the Folk Life  Institute making field recordings of Yorkshire  Dales music. I soon got to know Jackie  Beresford of Buckden in Wharfedale. Jackie  was the heart of the village - taxi driver, barman  at the Buck Inn, and musician, playing for  dances in the hall as his father had once done.  Here he is with his son Peter. When we formed  the band Mr Fox in 1970, he was one of our  inspirations. In 1969, when I left Leeds, I got a job  teaching English in Stevenage. Carole  Pegg and I were already well known on  the folk scene, and Bill Leader, iconic  recording engineer, offered to record us  for his Trailer label. This led to our forming  the band Mr Fox and being signed by  Transatlantic Records. If you want to find  out more about the life and times of the  band, Rob Young’s Electric Eden (Faber)  has a substantial chapter. Mr Fox lasted less than  two years - wild times -  though we won quite a  few “best of” awards in  the music press. After  the split in ‘72 I teamed  up with Nick Strutt, a  great country picker and  good companion of the  road, for two albums.  Nick died in 2009. While working at Lumb Bank I recorded many tales of  millworkers, quarrymen, hill  farmers and rural eccentrics  from the area round Hebden  Bridge. One story told of a  boot that was struck by  lightning. The wearer lost part  of his foot as a result. During the 1980s I worked with Julie Fullarton  as The Beasties, as Cleveland’s Writer in  Residence, and as national organiser of the  Legal and General Songsearch competition.  Perhaps most enjoyable of all was the annual  summer-long stint being music tutor for the  Highland Youth Theatre; what tremendous  fun, trundling along the (in those days) single-  track roads with a couple of vans full of  teenagers, barnstorming village halls from  Portree to Lochcarron (this picture), to Tain. Another highlight of the  1980s was when Charivari  staged productions of The  Shipbuilder, a Gothic song melodrama which first  came out as an album for  Transatlantic in 1974.  Here it is on the beach,  during the 1985 Whitby  Folk Week.  2000 people  saw it. Not long after moving to the Highlands in  1989, I became employed by the Council  as a part-time arts worker. This gave  wonderful opportunities to try out new  ideas, which included “make your own  harp in a day” workshops, the three year  long Merry Dancers Storytelling project,  and the Junior Folk Orchestra, which was open to any young player who could  manage a major scale on their  instrument. Mhairi Ross,  shown here  around 1995, today has her own band.  One of the pleasures of  living in the Highlands has  been to meet and work with some of the great Traveller  entertainers. This is Alec  Williamson, who learnt his  stories around the  campfire. Many of them are  ancient international tales,  which he tells in both  Gaelic and English. in 1977 I was employed by the  Arvon Foundation in West  Yorkshire to make recordings of  the area’s spoken history. Lumb  Bank, where I was based,is the  building at the far right of this 19th  century photo. It belonged to Ted  Hughes, who lived there for a  while with Sylvia Plath. Mum and Dad The Shipbuilder in Whitby The Colden valley