History

The three Waterson siblings, Norma and Lal and Mike, were born in Park Street to a half native Hull half Irish Traveller family, and orphaned at a very early age. The whole family of extended aunts, uncles and cousins were very musical and close-knit, and the siblings grew up with a love of music from all over the world. They were influenced as much by the American Forces Radio their father listened to in the War as by the old Music Hall songs their mother and grandmother loved.

In the 1950s the family established the iconic Folk Union One club at the Blue Bell in Hull, booking musical artists from all over the UK and beyond. At the same time they toured extensively, recorded several albums and influenced many people as they went including pop artists such as Steve Winwood of Traffic, and Irish musicians such as the Dubliners.

Though two of the siblings have passed away, the Watersons continue to influence the modern UK folk and pop scene today.  Dr. Norma Waterson MBE is recognised as one of the greatest singers this country has ever produced, in addition to holding a wealth of  information regarding the ancient traditions of the British Isles, as well as folkloric practises around the world.