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Other Suffolk dulcimer players



Frederick (1863-1925) or Frank (1873-1948) Barkway  - Brockdish /Needham


A newspaper report about a workmens’ treat held on 27th December 1888 says, ‘Some excellent music was given by H. Barkway (violin), F. Barkway (dulcimer) and W. Shemming on the German flute.’ This was for employees at Syleham Mill, and held “through the kindness of Mr and Mrs Holmes”. We have come across the Holmes before, hosting other such munificent events with music from the Shemming family. (Diss Express, 4th January 1889)

Whilst no H. Barkway has been traced, we can be fairly sure that the F. Barkway was one of two brothers, either Frederick (1863-1925) or Frank (1873-1948). Their family kept the Fellmonger’s Arms in nearby Brockdish for many years and their brother Thomas (possibly the T. Barkway mentioned in the article) lived near the Holmes in Syleham, with family members working at the drabbet mill. Frederick and Frank both remained single all their lives and worked in the family trade of fellmongering (leather-working) and glove-making. Sometime after the Fellmongers was closed, the two brothers moved to Needham where they lived out the remainder of their lives.


Mr C. Bates - Beccles


A Mr C. Bates played three dulcimer solos “especially worthy of admiration” as well as a duet with A. Bates accompanying him on banjo, on a programme of comic songs, sketches and band sets, at a Smoking Concert held by the Working Mens’ Club in the Town Hall in Beccles in January 1889 (People’s Weekly, 2nd February 1889)



Bendall - Rattlesden


The grandson of Alick Sparks from Rattlesden told us that his grandfather had been inspired by hearing a dulcimer player locally, one of the Bendall family from Hightown Green. There was certainly a large family by this name farming near the windmill near Gedding in the 1881 census.



Miss M. Brand - Thelnetham


In January 1895, an entertainment was held in the School Room in Thelnetham and on the programme was Miss M. Brand, playing a selection of tunes on the dulcimer and also accompanying singer Kitty Wells. (Bury Free Press, 1th January 1895)



Mr. Brinkley - Walton


For two years between February 1880 and April 1882 the local newspapers carried regular reports of Penny Readings held in the School Room at Walton near Felixstowe, where Mr Brinkley’s dulcimer solos were a highlight of the amateur entertainments provided.



Mr. B. Churchard - Bury St. Edmunds


Throughout the 1890s, Mr C. Wright and Mr B. Churchard were busy playing playing at socials and fetes in aid of the Temperance movement n Bury St Edmunds and the surrounding villages. Mr Wright played the piano, Mr Churchard sang, and they both played the dulcimer, with their dulcimer duets mentioned a number of times. They played in the ‘East End Minstrels’ together until about 1900 when all newspaper reports stop. Then unexpectedly, in 1933, Mr Churchard puts in one final appearance in the newspapers, playing the dulcimer as part of the Bury St Edmunds Unemployed Workers Association Concert Party. His talents appeared undimmed after 30 years, the newspaper report commenting: ‘Mr B. Churchard can play a dulcimer in capital style, and his selections proved popular.’ (Bury Free Press 25th March 1933)



Mr. Cullum - Lowestoft



Miss Marie Davies - Framlingham


Master Walter Fairweather - Framlingham

Robert Foulsham - Huntingfield

Mr. Green - Lowestoft


Mr. W. Holland - Riddlesworth


Mr. Miller - Ipswich

Mr. Newsom - Framlingham

Mr. Roberts  - Badwell Ash

Rumsby family - Palgrave


 A. E. Sachs - Ipswich



Charles Smith - Glemsford


Mr. Webb - Beccles /Ipswich   


H. J. Woods - Thrandeston



Thomas Woods - Market Weston


C. Wright - Bury St. Edmunds




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