Folk legends reunite for White Bear gathering!

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Three of the UK’s best known folk artists will be “Gathering” at a North Yorkshire inn next month (March) as it revives the music nights for which it was once famous.

Ray Jackson, Doug Morter and Jerry Donahue – former members of legendary folk groups Lindisfarne, Fotheringay and Fairport Convention – who came together in 2009 to form The Gathering, will be performing an acoustic set at the T&R -owned White Bear Hotel in Masham, on the evening of Thursday, March 29.

T&R Theakston Ltd Executive Director Simon Theakston and White Bear Hotel General Manager Sue Thomas hold the 1982 Lindisfarne album, Sleepless Nights, which features two Theakston’s beer bottles
T&R Ltd Executive Director Simon and White Bear Hotel General Manager Sue Thomas hold the 1982 Lindisfarne album, Sleepless Nights, which features two Theakston’s beer bottles


The Gathering is the first of a series of musical events the hotel aims to stage as part of its celebrations marking the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

Sue Thomas, General Manager of the White Bear, said: “We’re very excited to be welcoming three icons of the folk scene next month in what promises to be a superb night of great music, the curtain raiser to our Diamond Jubilee celebrations.

The connections between Lindisfarne and Theakston’s goes back to 1981, when the band were playing their season at Newcastle City Hall and Theakston’s sponsored the beer, backstage.

The friendship between T&R Theakston director Simon Theakston and Ray Jackson, then of Lindisfarne, has endured ever since.

Arising from the strong connection between the two, this led to the first and only Theakston’s Music Festival which was staged in 1982 at Nostell Priory, Wakefield, where the lineup included Jethro Tull with Lindisfarne headlining.

The same year, Lindisfarne released their Sleepless Nights album and the cover included a bottle of Theakston’s Old Peculier and a bottle of Theakston’s Best Bitter!

Sue added:

The music festival helped create part of the Theakston legend and the White Bear secured its position as a venue for hosting first-class music nights which attracted a following from all over the north of England.

Ray became a regular at the White Bear, and even held his stag night here.

One of the highlights of this special year will be the eleventh Annual Beer Festival in June, which will feature a host of local musical talent spanning the three days.

On this tour, the group plans to “go back to basics”, performing “great hits and long forgotten ditties”. They will be promoting their first album, “The Bridge Between”.

Ray Jackson initially found success as a founding member of Lindisfarne and later performed on sessions for The Yardbirds and Rod Stewart. He has played at prestigious venues worldwide, including in Japan and Australia.

Jerry Donahue is no stranger to the spotlight, with swing giant Sam Donahue and film actress Patricia Donahue as parents. Jerry has created a unique and widely recognised fusion of Celtic folk and American country and blues.

The list of performers with whom Doug Morter has shared a stage is a real who’s -who of folk and rock, with names including David Bowie, Jethro Tull, Supertramp, Kinks and Sutherland Brothers. He and Donahue still perform together on occasion as The Backroom Boys.

A limited number of tickets for The Gathering, priced at £15 to include supper, are available from The White Bear, Masham, by emailing Sue at

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