A MUSIC society in Whitchurch is set to be revived about 30 years after it closed.

Whitchurch Folk Club will be launching its first meeting on Friday, October 13 with an appearance from Faustus plus a special guest.

The club’s resurgence is thanks to digital media consultant, Jon Wilks, and musician, Paul Sartin, who both live in the town.

Mr Wilks said: “We both bumped into each other on a train and talked about folk music and then we thought we should do something using Paul’s contacts, my skills and both our experience and talents about bringing folk music back into Whitchurch.

“The town has this long history of music and folk songs that not many people know about so it seems an ideal place to start again.”

Folk collectors, people who worked to preserve musical traditions, travelled out to towns and rural areas to write down songs workers would sing while in the fields, workhouses or while drinking in pubs.

Mr Wilks said Whitchurch is where the Victorian folk scholar George Gardiner collected 11 songs unique to the town.

Mr Gardiner came across Henry Lee, a Whitchurch labourer living with his daughters, who sang the songs they knew from living in the town.

Mr Wilks added: “I love the fact that Whitchurch has this almost hidden musical history – something that local music lovers can explore and bring back to life.

“Some of the songs are incredibly beautiful, too.

“Have a listen to If I Were a Blackbird, and see for yourself – such a gorgeous, heartbreaking melody. It’s wonderful.”

Paul Sartin has been in bands including Bellowhead, Faustus and Belshazzar’s Feast.

Mr Wilks runs Grizzle Folk, a website on traditional songs and folk bands.

For more information, visit grizzlyfolk.com/whitchurch-folk-club/