The First Of May

Traditional Jack-in-the Green May Day Festival in Hastings, Sussex, May 2014
Chimney sweeps’ May Day celebration 1795 (by Cruikshank?)
1935 East Surrey Morris at Thaxted where the morris sides of the whole country gather to this day to dance and leap to encourage the crops and general fruitfulness. And sure enough, eleven years later I was born.
May Day was always a time to celebrate the fruitfulness of the earth but nowadays the May Queen is usually very young.
In my 1950s school days we danced around a maypole.
In the Forest of Dean Bream’s permanent Maypole was removed from the middle of the road in 1925.
More recently it was replaced close by. Hurrah!

About SongShepherd

Singer, musician & cyclist.
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