NEFS Weekend – Resources

NEFS Residential Weekend
Fri 2nd – Sun 4th December 2022

Thank you for coming! We had a wonderful time and hope you all did too!

Link to Google Drive folder with some photos!

Thank you for signing up to extend your Block 6 Saturday Workshop with us over the weekend. We are looking forward to a lovely weekend of meals together, sessions, with a concert on the Saturday evening, and optional bed and breakfast. This page will provide any extra information and materials for weekend participants.

Participants Bookings – please check to confirm your attendance details are correct. This also contains the 1-1 Teaching Slots from the table below.


If you are booked in for the Friday evening, please plan to arrive at or after 5.00 pm. This is the welcome with a few tunes to take us to dinner – the main music session will be after dinner. Dinner is a sit-down meal at 6.00 pm, so if you know that you will be late, or don’t now require dinner, please let me know. For last minute changes, please call or text me on 07843 238139.

If your first event is the Saturday workshop, please plan to arrive for 9.45 am and the first workshop will start promptly at 10.00 am.


Shepherds Dene Retreat House, Riding Mill, Northumberland NE44 6AF
01434 682212


There is parking at the bottom of the driveway before you reach the building itself. Where the driveway flattens out you can park on the right hand side. If this is full, please follow the driveway around and back up towards the road, where you will find a car park on the left hand side. It will take just a couple of minutes to walk back down. If you prefer to unload your things at the main door before parking, please do so.

Signing in and out

Signing in and out is very important at Shepherds Dene for fire regulations. Over the weekend there will be a lot of people coming and going at different times, so please help by using their process. There is a clipboard on arrival where you need to sign in to the event, and sign out when you leave. If you leave the building for a short time during your stay, there is a separate in/out clipboard near the door – please keep that up to date.

Session Materials

All of the teaching materials are available on the Block 6 Saturday Workshop page. For the sessions on Friday and Saturday evenings, and possibly just before lunch on Sunday, we will again use the NEFS Live Tunes as a basis for shared repertoire:
NEFS Live Tunes – to December 2022

As there are a lot of tunes in our Live Tunes repertoire now, here are a shortlist of six that we will definitely play, along with some bowing suggestions:
NEFS Residential Weekend & Saturday Workshop – Big Tunes

If you would like to access the full resources for all of the tunes, and even the video recordings of the Live Zoom Calls in which they were taught, you can head to this page:
Password: nefs2022b6

Book Browsing Table

As part of the relaxed approach to Sunday morning, we thought it would be nice to share some of our favourite fiddle-related books with each other. If you would bring a book or two that you particularly like and don’t mind others looking through, we will set up a browsing table. These could be tune books, or fiddle practice books, or books about folk music in general. If you get a chance to write what you particularly like about the book (on a small piece of paper or post-it note), that would be very helpful.


Daytime refreshments are included in the Saturday workshop, and on Sunday morning at coffee time. If you would like a bar drink with your dinner or during the sessions there is a small honesty bar (bottles only), which you can settle up for directly with Shepherds Dene (cash or card) before you leave. We can only take water into the Chapel where we will be holding the larger sessions, but you can take time out in the bar, the lounge or the Terrace Room to enjoy your drinks.

Warm layers

Shepherds Dene is an old building and certain rooms might feel chilly at times if the weather is cold, especially if sitting for longer periods of time. Please bring extra layers to wear to keep you warm!


We are delighted that local fiddle ensemble, Woolsington Strings, have agreed to come and perform a lovely selection of tunes for you. The group specialises in arranging folk tunes and harmonies for listening, demonstrating many different fiddle techniques to great effect!

NEFS Directors, Stewart and Ali, will also share some of their duo material – just to keep them on their toes!

One-to-one teaching slots

Lots of people chose to book a 1-1 teaching slot with Stewart on Sunday morning, so to fit eveyone in, theses slots are 15 minutes per person. Please think ahead if there is something you would like to focus on – a particular technique you need help with, a tricky passage in a tune, a bowing pattern etc… anything really, but if you think ahead and keep it precise you might get more from the time available. If it is a tune, please bring notation with you if you can, and you can email things to me in advance if you think that would help Stewart.

TimeName ……………………………………………………
09:30 – 09:45Janet Simkin
09:45 – 10:00Liz Revell
10:00 – 10:15Maureen McCarthy
10:15 – 10:30David Marsden
10:30 – 10:45Andrew Leon
11:00 – 11:15Alyson Learmonth
11:15 – 11:30Kevin Jones
11:30 – 11:45Jacqui Harris
11:45 – 12:00Lucy Creasey

Weekend Timetable

Printable version (pdf)


TimeEvent …………………………………………………………….
17:00Arrive & tunes!
18:00 – 19:00Dinner
19:30 – closeSession


TimeEvent ……………………………………………………..
08:30Breakfast for residential guests
10:00 – 17:00Saturday Workshop for Block 6
– see Block 6 Saturday Workshop
page for details
18:00 – 19:00Dinner
19:30 – 20:30Informal Concert with guests
20:30 – closeSession


TimeEvent ……………………………………………………..
08:30Breakfast for residential guests
09:30 – 10:45
11:15 – 12:30
Optional 1-1s with Stewart /
Tune Workshop / Book browsing
12:30 – 14:00Sunday lunch to finish