Newquay’s Heva (Hevva) Dance
As played at Rescorla Session
In 1961 Newquay created its own furry dance. The town had historically used the North Cornwall Furry to process from Crantock Street School out to the bonfire at Pentire Head on Midsummer’s eve and had adapted it as weekly event during the summer tourist season. It was felt that Newquay needed a Furry Dance of its own and the Heva Dance was written together with a song informed by Old Cornwall Society records that captured the history of the town. The song starts with the lyrics “Heva, Heva now the catch is in, let the singing dancing and the troyl begin”. “Heva” was the cry that went out to launch the seine boats when a shoal of pilchards was seen in the bay. “Troyl” is a dialect word for a barn dance, or in this case a fish cellar dance as that was where they held the parties at the end of the pilchard season. Whilst Furry Dances continued as a living tradition in Cornwall throughout the early part of the nineteenth century they were not as widespread in the 1960s as they had once been. Newquay set an example for other towns to follow in reviving or creating their own furry dances.
H Whipps original Score
Nigel Tangy’s Lyrics from the original 1961 programme
See Heva sung by Oll an Gwella for Newquay’s virtual St Piran’s Festival in 2022 (second item in )
See Cornish Session Tunes Project
For more about Cornish Session Tunes