The Royal Scottish Country Dance Society (RSCDS)

Scottish Dancing "Headquarters"

The RSCDS is located in Edinburgh.

The Scottish Country Dance Society was formed on 26th November 1923 at a meeting held in Glasgow [..]. The title 'Royal' was conferred upon the Society by King George VI in 1951. HM Queen Elizabeth II became Patron in 1952. [..]

It has now become a worldwide organisation with a membership of thousands. [..]

The work undertaken by the RSCDS is determined by its Objects. In 1923 they were set out as follows:

  • To practise and preserve country dances as danced in Scotland;
  • To collect old books and pictures illustrative of Scottish dances;

To bring them into line with the development of the Society's work, the Objects have been amended and are now:   

  • To preserve and further the practice of traditional Scottish country dances;
  • To provide, or assist in providing, special education or instruction in the practice of Scottish country dances;
  • To promote/publish by all available means information and music relating to Scottish country dancing and in particular to publish, or cause to be published, descriptions of Scottish country Dances with music and diagrams in simple form and at moderate price;
  • (d) To collect books, manuscripts, illustrations and other memorabilia relating to Scottish country dancing and to the Society;
  • (e)  Generally, to do such other things as are or may be considered by the Society to be incidental or conducive to the attainment of the objects above stated or any of them.

The co-founders and their associates aimed to revive Scottish country dancing and to restore it to the ballroom in a dignified and sociable manner. To achieve that goal, and to allow country dancers to enjoy the country dances wherever they might be, a measure of standardisation had to be adopted. However, there was never an intention to impose a rigid and inflexible uniformity. [..]

From its earliest days the Society sought to promote and to maintain the standards it set in a number of ways. Firstly, instruction was, and continues to be, available in classes organised by Branches of the Society and by groups  affiliated  to   it;   secondly,  since   1924,  teaching  certificates   have  been   awarded   to  members  who successfully complete a training course; thirdly, a Summer School, first held in St Andrews in 1927, has played a very significant part in spreading the Society's message. It offers classes for all levels of ability and now, reflecting the international character of the Society, brings together dancers from all over the world.

(Excerpts from »The Manual of Scottish Country Dancing«, RSCDS)


Link to the RSCDS