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Kings Pond Shantymen were formed in 2001 and over the years have performed at many events in their home patch of Hampshire and Surrey in England as well as further afield. Our repertoire covers a wide range of shanty styles: long and short hauls, pumping and capstan as well as forebitters and whaling songs. All the well-known favourites are included and audience participation is actively encouraged. In addition to the maritime material we also perform a few folk ballads, drinking songs and odd ditties. At Christmas we sing carols and on Old Twelfth Night we sing wassails. We aim for an authentic shanty style: unaccompanied male voices singing together in a lively fashion with harmonies thrown in rather than pre-planned.
We all like to sing and drink a pint or two of beer, but not at the same time as it tends to waste the beer.
The Men appeared on UK National Television series 'Escape to the Country' singing on HMS Warrior in Portsmouth, the episode frequently gets re-aired - you can see the clip on our Facebook page.
When Johnny Comes Down to Hilo is a typical boisterous example:
Lower Lights - is not a shanty in fact - but is from our huge repertoire of maritime misery:
Our name originates from Kings Pond in Alton Hampshire and reflects both our nautical incompetence and our base of operations.
We practise almost every Monday from 8.00 - 10.00pm and you are welcome to join us if you want to try out shanty singing or just listen-in to get a flavour of our character before making a booking. We are very grateful to various pubs and clubs, currently The Sandrock in Farnham, The Hen and Chicken at Upper Froyle near Alton, The Eight Bells in Alton, and Passfield Club at Liphook for providing quiet(!) rooms in which to practise. We choose these venues not only for their friendly welcome and tolerance but also for the very high quality of their ale. Contact The Captain for details as we move about a bit.
Practice night invariably involves a fair amount of laughter and ribaldry - see The Craic.
We can be quite well behaved in public and will accept bookings for dinners, product launches, private parties, weddings, residential homes, birthday parties, civic receptions, fetes, club nights, pub nights, mess nights, beer festivals and the like.
As well as singing aboard HMS Warrior in Portsmouth for the BBC we also have had the great honour of singing on board HMS Victory for Trafalgar Dinners.
At street events we collect donations for the Royal National Lifeboat Institution - if you give us enough money we'll even stop singing! Our generous listeners have contributed thousands of pounds in donations over the years.