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GUEST,Pseudonymous Review: Walter Pardon; Research (498* d) RE: Review: Walter Pardon; Research 12 Nov 19

Regarding Parr's Farm, Hall Lane, Knapton, the book on Knapton (dated 2011) states that at the time of writing Willie Puncher (b 1937) who was brought up there, farmed there. The family still do, you can google it.

It also states that Roger Dixon's uncles George and Hubert, Aunt Ruth and Lucy lived for a time at the farm. I cannot find a date for this, but it says that George farmed there.

If Pardon's farmhouse (and I am sure on the basis of what he says himself in one interview that it was originally a farmhouse as opposed to a 'farm labourer's house/cottage) was not Parr's Farm, then the question arises of why the people who made the film chose to insert footage of a sign giving that name. And on that, one person's analysis of the semiotics and/or the intentions of the film maker (who presumably had his own biases) is as good as another.

NB Simple definition of semiotics: Semiotics is the study of signs and symbols, in particular as they communicate things spoken and unspoken. Common signs that are understood globally include traffic signs, emojis, and corporate logos. Written and spoken language is full of semiotics in the form of intertextuality, puns, metaphors, and references to cultural commonalities.

The book includes some quotation from Roger Dixon (and draws heavily on first person accounts by people who lived in or were connected to Knapton in the 20th century). The Gees (ie Walter's mother's family, the one Dixon had links to), according to Roger Dixon, would tell 'all sorts of tales about music-making in the past'. Dixon does not make a judgment about how far such 'tales' were an accurate reflection of history. But, and this interests me, the example Dixon gives is not one about 'a tradition' or 'the tradition' is it might be defined by one of the sub-groups on Mudcat but one about the church. 'One [tale] was the family formed the church band in the reign of William IV in the 1830s, before the Robinson family provided the first harmonium in the church'. For an account of music in churches, I seem to recall that Vic Gammon has a piece on it.

The name 'Cook Gee' (as in some of Walter's ancestors, including his Uncle Billy, seems to have first arisen early in the 19th century when a Cook married a Gee, and to have spread quite widely thereafter. There may have been more than one marriage between a Cook and a Gee I suppose.

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