It’s festival time

PUBLISHED: 12:20 04 May 2006 | UPDATED: 10:06 06 May 2010

The traditional Maypole dance

The traditional Maypole dance

ALTHOUGH there were grey skies and cool weather, the May Day Festival on the village green at Ickwell was once again a roaring success. Residents and visitors enjoyed the traditional delights of the event that included maypole dancing that started in the

Morris men join in the fun

ALTHOUGH there were grey skies and cool weather, the May Day Festival on the village green at Ickwell was once again a roaring success.

Residents and visitors enjoyed the traditional delights of the event that included maypole dancing that started in the rain at 6.30am, a tradition in the village for over 100 years.

Even in the damp early morning light people started gathering on the picturesque village green that can trace its May festival in church records at St Mary's Northill back to 1560.

Then, money was raised by villagers to pay for children's shoes, ribbons and bells for dancing around the maypole.

Many children joined in the festivities and dancing and by the afternoon the clouds had cleared and the village green was packed to watch the crowning of the May Queen Frances Rix by last year's queen Jessica Freeman.

"After the early morning rain when things looked very gloomy the day eventually turned into a fabulous event," said festival chairman Rene Welch.

"The object of the event is to perpetuate the festival's traditions that go back over 400 years.

"By the end of the day the village was packed with people enjoying the festival.


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