Ickwell May Day

The next May Day will be held on Monday 2nd May 2016
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The sun shone on a wonderful Ickwell May Day Festival this year. Following the procession from Northill to Ickwell, Jenny Hawkes was crowned as this year’s May Queen on Monday as part of the traditional Ickwell May Day celebrations. Last year’s May Queen Katie Bryant crowned Queen Jenny. Sian Roberts presented the garland and Angel Westbury presented the sceptre. Jenny was also attended by Megan Royle and Isabella Thiedeman and her page boys were Jack and Michael. Jenny was then presented with a locket as a keepsake of the day from the May Queen of 1957 Annette Harding (nee Edwards). 
 The flowers then paid homage to their queen and after the crowning ceremony those children who had decorated hoops with flowers showed off their creativity as they paraded around the arena and the children whose hoops had been judged as the best were given a small prize.  
The dancing then began in earnest with junior maypole dancers dancing around the pole, followed by young morris dancers. The little ones of the villages, some as young as four, then took their turn and danced for the entertainment of the crowd. They were followed by the older children performing country dances. All the dancers performed excellently and received fantastic applause from the crowd. It was then the turn of the old scholars of the village to plait the ribbons round the maypole.
Following the Old Scholars, visiting dancers Heartsease, St Neots Sweeps and Milkmaids performed, followed by the Village Dancers. The Old Scholars returned to the arena to demonstrate the circassian circle before all onlookers were invited to join in.
A big thank you is extended from the May Day committee to all those who help to make the May Day festival possible. From the children and their parents to the teachers and dancing helpers in school, to those who help make cakes and serve in the tea room, for the use of tractors and trailers and their drivers, to the musicians and to all those who help with all the work that goes on behind the scenes. The committee really does appreciate it.



Old Scholars

Old documents show that celebrating May Day was an established custom here as far back as 1563. The current form of celebrations, with the plaiting of ribbons and a May Queen, began in 1894 and has been held nearly every year since. We don’t have photographs going quite that far back, but we are planning to have a display of our records and archive photography in June 2016. If you have any old photos or film of Ickwell May Day that you would be willing to copy or loan for this event the May Day committee would really appreciate it. If you can help in this way, please contact Richard Beaty on 01767627119 or e-mail: Richard.beaty@btinternet.com Details of the event will be published on here nearer the time.

M Marsom

Past May Queens

The photo gallery page includes archival photographs of most of the past May Queens going back to 1911

© 2015 Ickwell May Day All rights reserved.