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The Houghton Weavers are an English folk music band formed in 1975 in Westhoughton, Bolton, Greater Manchester, England. The current band members are David Littler (acoustic guitar, banjo, mandolin, banjo-ukulele, bouzouki, piano accordion and vocals), Steve Millington (bass guitar, keyboards, acoustic guitar, piano accordion and vocals) and Tony Berry (lead vocalist).
David Littler and Tony Berry are both founder members of the band, whilst Steve Millington joined in 1996.
Previous members were Norman Prince (1975 to 1999, acoustic guitar, banjo, 12 string guitar, bass guitar and vocals), John Oliver (1975 to 1976 vocals), Denis Littler (1976 to 1984 bass guitar and vocals) and Jeff Hill (1984 to 1996 and 1999 to 2007 bass Guitar, acoustic guitar, 12 string guitar, electric guitar and vocals) Whilst never officially a member of the band, Alan Fawkes was a frequent guest--"he couldn't stand the drop in pay" (dates unknown: woodwind instruments)
They sing mainly English folk music, much of it in Lancashire dialect, and demonstrate an eclectic range of song subjects including "The Blackpool Belle", "Uncle Joe’s Mintballs" and "Matchstalk Men and Matchstalk Cats and Dogs" (a biographical song about the painter L. S. Lowry).
They are best known for their BBC TV show Sit Thi Deawn (Lancashire dialect for "have a seat", referring to the hospitality of Lancashire people). The programme ran for six series or seven years and was a mixture of easy listening music and comedy for a local audience. The group also starred in six of their own series for BBC Radio 2.
- “Bolton’s culture brings together these world wide diversities into a microcosm. The aim of the Town should be to bring these various differences together to promote understanding and harmony which will in turn give the future town its own unique culture! The Houghton Weavers will continue to promote the musical culture of this area world wide.” – The Houghton Weavers
- "With 'folk' you either think of something like the Houghton Weavers, or proper folk." – Andy Kershaw