Bromyard By Night

Leaving Song & Dance mid morning, we reached Bromyard in the early afternoon instead of the expected lunchtime as about eight miles out we kept running into “Road Closed Ahead” signs but strangely no posted diversions. Eventually running up against a “Road Closed” sign, and a traffic jam, we managed to turn round, and head off off piste in an attempt to circumnavigate the problem. Unfortunately, a 44 tonne Artic just in front of us had the same idea, but the chosen back road was very winding, very narrow, and the trees rather lower than his trailer. We eventually got out from under, and managed to find our way in. (We subsequently found out that there had been a nasty three-car pile-up on the hill outside Bromyard, blocking the road, and they hadn’t managed – when we got there – to put up diversion signs. Ho hum.

The dancer of Song & Dance  was very excited: it was the first time we’d been to Bromyard since 1993, and her dance troupe had never been formally invited, so this was forgivable.

The Friday night highlight for the Morris fraternity is a torchlight procession in the rain…

Bromyard Folk FestivalBromyard Folk Festival

After assembling in the Rose and Lion (the only pub so named in the UK, it seems),

Bromyard Folk Festival - And They're OffBromyard Folk Festival - Jackstraws Morris

the Mayor, Town Crier and dignitaries head off, followed by a bunch of Morris persons.

Bromyard Folk FestivalBromyard Folk Festival

Jackstraws sounded very subdued when walking compared with the North West Clog side Earlsdon, who sounded more like Jackboots Morris (not to mention their very large drum). SWMBO has history with Earlsdon, so your scribe must be circumspect.

Bromyard Folk Festival - Great Western MorrisBromyard Folk Festival - Jackstraws Morris

The Hop Pole pub/hotel at the other end of town had closed, but as tradition demands, each side still danced one dance outside. Great Western Morris danced the Upton On Severn Stick Dance after setting fire to their sticks, while Jackstraws  – who also dance the UoSSD – decided instead to wash their hankies, and danced their signature dish, the much more delicate Fieldtown Shepherd’s Hey. So far so good…

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