Phil Preen

Martin Wildig

Martin Wildig

I first met Martin when he started working in the software department with me at Polymer Laboratories. This was in the mid 1990s. At the time he was still into marathon racing, and when we went to the pub on a Friday lunchtime he would often drink orange juice. Anyone who knows Martin now may not believe this, but it is true.

I was just getting into folk music and was learning to play the tin whistle. When I discovered that Martin used to play violin at school, I persuaded him to dig it out, and join me and a couple of friends from the Sealed Knot who used to get together on a Thursday evening to play Playford tunes and Irish tunes very slowly and very badly. He hadn't played for so long that his bow had exploded, but when he got a new one, he soon proved to be a much better player than the rest of us.

I started taking Martin along to folk clubs, in particular The King William IV in Thurcaston where we met Edward Reeve and Rose Gorringe. Rose danced and Edward played with Anstey Royale Chalfont and persuaded Martin to also join as a musician. I did not join at that time because I used to attend another folk club on a Tuesday night at The Forest Rock in Woodhouse Eaves. Martin still occasionally plays for Anstey Royale Chalfont, but he mainly now plays with Mortimers Morris.

Edward and Rose also invited us to join a new ceilidh band they were forming called The Acme Dance Company. Martin agreed to play fiddle with the band if Edward taught him to play the melodeon. When The Acme Dance Company disbanded, Martin and I formed The Bang On The Wall Band together, and this has gone from strength to strength.

When Julie and I got married in 2005, Martin was my best man. We weren't going to have speeches at our wedding, but Martin insisted. We're glad he did as it was very clever and very funny.

Martin now works as an independent website designer. So if you're looking for a new website, take a look at www.wildigweb.co.uk.