Wassailing season begins in style in Congresbury

PUBLISHED: 15:00 16 January 2018

The wassail drew a big crowd to the Millennium Green.

The wassail drew a big crowd to the Millennium Green.

Archant

Congresbury residents took part in an ancient tradition this week, which involved blessing trees, with the hope of prompting a successful season for cider-making.

The Green Man and his helpers. Pictures: Mark AthertonThe Green Man and his helpers. Pictures: Mark Atherton

Villagers flocked to the Millennium Green to take part in the village’s annual wassail on Saturday.

The celebration, which originates from a Pagan ritual dating back centuries, drew a large crowd including many children who enjoyed making as much noise as possible with their pots, pans and wooden spoons.

Revellers hope the racket, followed by bizarre traditions, banished evil spirits from the green and woke the apple trees from their slumber.

Cider-soaked toast was adorned on the trees’ branches to encourage a fruitful crop of apples in 2018.

The Green Man blessing a tree.The Green Man blessing a tree.

Villagers later took part in traditional cider-infused songs and children posed for pictures with the Green Man, Brian Kemplay, who led the proceedings with old rhymes.

The Green Man blessing a tree.The Green Man blessing a tree.

Villagers hung toast on the apple tree.Villagers hung toast on the apple tree.

Many children took part in the ceremony.Many children took part in the ceremony.

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