EVER-popular folk group The Houghton Weavers is helping bring the cheer back into Christmas this year with a festive tour.

The group, which has been entertaining fans across the world for the past 45 years, is starting its North West Christmas tour and is appearing in its home town at the Bolton Little Theatre on Wednesday, December 22.

“We are so looking forward to meeting our local fans again after not having a Christmas tour last year because of lockdown,” explained keyboard player and bassist Steve Millington.

The Weavers were formed originally as the Westhoughton Weavers, as some of the lads lived in the town, but they dropped the “West” later as being too long.

The group also includes David Littler and Jim Berry, brother of longtime Weavers’ singer Tony Berry, who died from cancer in 2019.

They are joined on this tour by Paul Johnston of the Fivepenny Piece, who brings his own brand of music and humour.

The Weavers did their first tour since lockdown during September and were “delighted” to see their fans again and to spread the happiness and warmth for which they are well-known.

“Like everyone else, we’re looking forward to Christmas and all the family and friends getting together and enjoying themselves,” said Steve.

“Our audiences love Christmas and they love a singalong so we’ll be doing all the usual festive favourites like Let it Snow plus others that people love like Bless Your Whiskers Father Christmas.

“We have never taken ourselves too seriously. We just offer a good old sing-along, humour and fun for all the family!”

The group were busy during lockdown writing and recording in their own studio and created new songs including sea shanties, which have already gone down well with fans. They’re also working on a new album.

The Christmas tour includes a special Keep Folk Smiling weekend break at the Imperial Hotel in Blackpool from Friday, November 26 to Sunday, November 28 “when we really get to know our fans,” said Steve.

n For tickets call the Bolton Little Theatre box-office on 01204 524469 and for more information on the Blackpool weekend go to www.houghtonweavers.com, email houghtonweaversleisure@gmail.com or call Christine on 07808 271671.