Open Morris are proud to publish some very exciting news from Steps In Time. Many congratulations from all the OM Officers.

Press Release

Steps In Time receives the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service

Steps in time, a volunteer ran junior traditional/ Historic dance group based in Dorset have been honoured with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, the MBE for volunteer groups. It aims to recognise outstanding work by volunteer groups to benefit their local communities and is the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK.

Steps in time now in its 30th year, can often be seen around the local area performing traditional dance at festivals and fetes. As well as dancing locally We have also performed at Sidmouth International Folk Festival, the Olympics and Paralympics for London 2012, as well as representing England a number of times at the Europeade (Europe’s largest cultural festival) You may have even see us on TV , “Meet the Ancestors”, at the Filly Loo on BBC and ITV, “ADE in Britton”, shown around the world dancing at the Jane Austen Festival and even a glimpse in the Film “Morris a life with Bells on”. As well as dances mentioned by Thomas Hardy, in Janes Austen adaptations as well as other dances through history, we cover traditional rhymes and games with the first group and every few years teach making Dorset buttons, a skill we learnt from previous local generations and continue to pass on.

Representatives from Steps in Time attended a garden party at Buckingham Palace in May, along with other recipients of this year’s Award. Steps in Time will receive the award from [NAME], Lord Lieutenant of Dorset later this summer.

Penny-Jane Swift of Steps in Time says:

It is such an honour that the work Steps in Time do to preserve our heritage and pass it on to new generations has been recognised by our community, county and country. We are delighted to receive this award in recognition of all the work done by members of Steps in Time over the years, its dancers, musicians, parents and all those who have supported us with help and donations. When Dot Swift, who sadly passed away last year, started the group she didn’t expect it to be still going after 30 years let alone receive this award. Thank you all so much.

Steps in Time are planning a thank you/30th event later this year and will let everyone know when it is as plans finalise.

If you would like to help us with future funding or join us please contact us.

Tel: 07988908841 email
Donate to Steps in Time at

Notes to editors

  1. Lord Lieutenants represent the monarch in each of the UK’s ceremonial counties.
  2. This year there were 281 winners of The Queen’s Award Voluntary Service from across the UK. More information on the winners and the Award can be found at
  3. Any group of two or more people that has participated in voluntary work for more than three years can be nominated for the award. Full details on how to nominate are available at
  4. Nominations for the 2020 awards close on 13 September 2019.