With a love of the Ladybird fairy tales series, and the stories told to her about the trees and rocks of the forests, Dee Dee's interest in folklore began at an early age. She soon developed a passion for answering the question of who we were, as a species, before we became who we are today, and how our landscapes and our stories shape us. Beginning this journey by exploring theology – focusing on our earliest myths and beliefs in the ancient world, and studying some in the original Latin, Greek and ancient Hebrew – she soon realised that she wanted to dig even deeper. She went on to study archaeology at both undergraduate and postgraduate level, looking at how people construct their identities, and how the landscapes that came before them shape them and their world view. Dee Dee believes that an understanding of people – through both history and place – can help inform us about the choices we make in our own lives, both as individuals and as societies, and ground us more consciously in our deepest motivations. Dee Dee has worked on community heritage outreach projects within museums, galleries, charities and schools, including with the Liverpool International Nordic Community for the Liverpool Capital of Culture, a Viking DNA project, and volunteered with Berber girls in the High Atlas Mountains of Morocco during the Arab Spring. She acted as outdoors education manager in a forest school, as one of four women on the SMT who led the institution to be named the best in the UK. This journey of connecting people through past and present culminated in the creation of #FolkloreThursday. She now spends her time curating weird and wonderful folklore from around the world for digital communities. Recent interviews include BBC Countryfile Magazine,The Independent, Vice UK and BBC World Service. When she's not pondering life, the universe and everything, Dee Dee enjoys walking, travelling and dreaming of French patisseries. Her first book, A Treasury of British Folklore: Maypoles, Mandrakes and Mistletoe, a beautifully illustrated introduction to the strange and varied lore of Britain, is available from National Trust Books. Her second, Treasury of Folklore – Seas and Rivers, co-authored with #FolkloreThursday's Willow Winsham and illustrated by Joe McLaren, is available from Batsford now. Their next book, Treasury of Folklore – Woodlands and Forests, is due from Batsford in summer 2021. She is a member of The Folklore Society and Toastmasters International. Visit her website here.
Through myth, fairy tale and legend, powerful women are depicted as dark, cruel and calculating, and they are often naturally
May Day is a traditional spring celebration in many cultures, linked with Gaelic Beltane, and is now also the date of Labour
I began writing 'Maypoles, Mandrakes and Mistletoe: A Treasury of British Folklore' back in April last year.
While much fairy folklore associated with prehistoric sites centres around barrows and brochs, many megaliths are linked to fairies, goblins