Poacher's Moon

Caroline:: John:: Louise:: Ray::
Drawing from forty years of musical experience in folk rock and traditional folk music, Dorset singer/songwriter John Anderson has become a prolific writer and composer of songs with their roots firmly based in acoustic folk music. Always having a love of vocal harmony John wanted to form a band of great musicians also capable of singing beautiful harmonies. Together with his wife Caroline, daughter Louise, Ray Tower, Gill Redmond and narrator Pete Coley, they make up the band 'Poacher's Moon'. They perform contemporary songs (written and composed by John) and a selection of well loved traditional songs. There are songs of love and loss, land and sea, ecology and history, together with songs that have their hearts very much in the south west of England.  With powerful lead vocals and stunning harmonies, this six strong band play an array of instruments including tenor, six and twelve string guitars, bouzouki, keyboard, cello, flute and percussion

BBC Broadcaster and musician (member of Decameron) Johnny Coppin says “With skillful arrangements of John Anderson’s instantly likeable songs, Poacher’s Moon are a very promising band.” Poacher's Moon are thrilled that Johnny has just recorded 'Dream of England' on his recently released album 'Borderland'.

Poacher's Moon have a new show for the end of 2018/9, named 'Seafarers', celebrating lives and times at sea, from the tall ships of old to the modern day.  This show will be raising funds for the RNLI with raffles and all proceeds after costs. If you would like to book this show for your Village Hall please contact Caroline using the info at the bottom of the page.


With the beautiful musicianship, harmony and singing of Louise Anderson, Caroline Anderson, Ray Tower, Pete Coley and Gill Redmond; John Anderson’s new production, ‘Poppies Red and Cornflowers Blue’, premiered in Dorset in 2014, the the year in which we commemorate the Centenary of the First World  War. This popular show is touring until 2018. Please scroll down the page to find the dates and venues for this show for 2017/18

Our story, told with original music and song, poems and narrative, with projected images as a backdrop, follows the lives of British soldiers from rural England - their excitement for adventure, willingness and patriotism for their beloved homeland. Often leaving a life of poverty, for better pay and decent food, we follow them from enlistment, through training, to the killing fields of France and Belgium to meet the foe.

Their dedication, selflessness, courage and heroism shall remain unsurpassed, for all of time. We dedicate this story to so many who gave their lives and fought for our freedom today.

In the wasteland of the Somme amidst the death and destruction rose the poppy and cornflower……. 

Poppies red and cornflower blue

 Shining out, across the feud

 They do not rise to shear and plough

No ploughman treads these fields, just now

They rise in war torn troubled lands

And there defiant, bravely stand

© JW Anderson 2013

In The First World War 703,000 British service men and women were killed and 1,663,000 were wounded. If one is to include Commonwealth troops, these figures rise to 908,000 killed and 2,123,000 wounded.

CDs which include all of the tracks from the show written and composed by John and performed by Poacher's Moon are now available for £11.50 (including postage). Please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for details of how to receive yours. The CDs will also be for sale at our performances, priced £10. There is an accompanying booklet which includes the lyrics to the songs and the history of how each song came to be written; this costs £2.

We are now taking bookings for the autumn of 2018. The cast for this season includes John, Caroline and Louise Anderson, Ray Tower and Pete Coley as the 'soldier'.

Blandford Corn Exchange, Dorset  on Friday 2nd November...more details to follow of our return to one of our favourite venues for this exciting event ...

St Mary's Church in Porchester Castle, Hampshire on Friday 26th October 2018...watch this space for more information about 'Poppies Red and Cornflowers Blue' in this prestigious venue,

Comemmorating Jack Counter from Blandford On Monday April 16th 2018 at 10:45am in Blandford's Market Place (outside the church by the Pump) there will be a commemorative event for Jack Counter hosted by Blandford Town Council, during which Poacher's Moon will sing the song written by John especially to commemorate the brave action of our very own local Jack! Everyone is welcome to come along and join in what is sure to be a very moving occasion.

Victoria Hall, Tisbury, near Salisbury, Wiltshire  SP3 6HD on Saturday April 8th 2017, at 7:30pm. Tickets cost £9 (or £8 for concessions) and are available from Kate Good's Pottery in the High Street Tisbury, or by ringing Caroline to reserve them on 01258488640 or 07973439677. They will also be available on the door. Home-made cakes, teas and coffees will be available and there will be a raffle in aid of Help for Heroes during the evening.

Child Okeford Village Hall Saturday March 11th 2017 at 7:30pm. Tickets cost £8 (or £7 for concessions) and can be reserved by ringing Caroline on 01258488640. Tickets will also be available on the door. Home-made cakes by the Child Okeford WI will be served with teas and coffees and there will be a raffle in aid of the British Red Cross

Pimperne Village Hall  Saturday 12th November 2016 7:30pm We are pleased to announce that we played to a large and enthusiastic audience thanks to Julia and John Jenner's hard work. The raffle made £100 for the British Legion which is great news in Remembrance Week.

 'The best show yet' John Busby Lee

Sherborne Cheap Street United Church 

We enjoyed a wonderfully enthusiastic audience on 19th November 2016 at this beautiful venue, many thanks to Christine and Barbara for selling so many tickets and supporting this event.











Have a look at some of our shows which ran from 2014 to 2016


Durweston Village Hall Saturday 22nd February 2014 7:30pm  This was a well attended premiere and here are some of the lovely comments that we received:

'Absolutely beautiful' Angela Lauder 

'A brilliant performance -so poignant and meaningful in our local communities' Paul Mc Neil

'A riveting evening of commemoration with both cheers and tears -in this centenary year Poppies Red and Cornflowers Blue' is not a production to be missed'    Peter Aston Forest FM Radio

Charlton Marshall Village Hall 29th March 2014 7:30pm  Sold Out                                                                                           'I just wanted to let you know how much we enjoyed Saturday night. The whole concept of the music and images, along with the narrative and Pete's storytelling, was quite inspirational. You should all be so proud of creating such a heart warming tribute to those who lived through such an awful period of our history and died as a consequence of it.'           Sarah Evans









Alderholt Village Hall SP6 3PH Saturday 24th May 2014 7:30pm 

'Absolutely fantastic -moving, interesting and completely absorbing -thank you for a lovely evening' 

'I much enjoyed the evening and greatly admired the lyrics' Peter Hinton

'Absolutely fantastic -moving, interesting and completely absorbing, thank you for a lovely evening' 

'Very respectful and emotional. I will definitely go again!' Mikey Barrett

Titchfield Parish Room, Hampshire PO14 4AB Friday 20th June 7:30pm 

'What  a moving evening, so glad I came to be with this talented group' Margaret Pace

Gillingham Methodist Church (Dorset) Saturday 26th July 2014. Famous locally for its music programme and stunning acoustics Poacher's Moon are thrilled to be asked to play here once again. This wonderful photo of Private Gritton was taken by Gordon Amery.

Ringwood Meeting House, Hampshire Saturday 2nd August 2014 at 7:30pm. 

This great picture was taken by Dennis Whitfield. 

'An excellent performance, it really brought home about the futility of war' Keith Aldous

'Very moving and poignant. Beautiful words and music. Thank you all' Gillian and Barry Lovett

Holtwood Community Hall at 8pm on Saturday 6th September

Allendale House Wimborne (East Dorset Heritage Trust) 

'What a pleasant evening -lovely music, moving words and a chance to join in too!' 

Portesham Village Hall  Saturday October 25th 2014 DT3 4NS 7:30pm  Great to be playing at this prestigious venue! For tickets please ring Caroline on 01258488640 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. £8.50 or £7.50 concessions. teas and cake available.

'A wonderful evening remembering a terrible war in the most beautiful way. We enjoyed singing along and remembering my grandfather Chris Morgan who was one of the many who never came home. Thank you!' Gaynor Morgan

The Corn Exchange in Blandford Forum on Friday 7th November 2014 at 7:30pm. Our enthusiastic audience came from as far afield as Solihull and Bournemouth and raised £80 for the Red Cross from the raffle (with prizes kindly donated by Blandford Morrisons) and a donation to the Blandford Town Council 14-18 Group. 


Rockbourne Village Hall Charity Event on Saturday 29th November 2014. A themed meal, a glass of wine and a donation to Forest Fundraisers for New Forest Young Carers are included in the £25 ticket. Please ring Joy Wood on 01725518475 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

'Thank you very much for a very memorable and most enjoyable performance on Saturday  which has gone down very well indeed in Rockbourne! You make a lovely sound.' Katie Bentall   

Tarrant Gunville Village Hall  Friday 13th February 2015 at 7:30pm £8:50 and £7:50 concessions. Wine, teas, coffees and refreshments. Please phone Ray on 07947439083 or Caroline on 01258 488640 to reserve your tickets,or email us on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . There will be a raffle in aid of The Red Cross. Tickets will also available on the door.

'This live performance of songs, music and images presents the triumphs and agonies of those who endured the Great War. The audience will relive the drama of the trenches whilst sharing the thoughts of countless families left at home to worry and fear for the safety of their loved ones. You will see and hear their stories through to the hero's final sacrifice and beyond, with their families left behind to live on. 

The show leaves us all to ponder on the price that was paid for us to live as we do. These reflections, for those with memories are no longer with us,  are presented with passion and enthusiasm by Poacher's Moon; using material written, composed and arranged by John.'                                  Peter Wright