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Pagan tradition revived in Kintbury

May Day celebrations in the sun

John Garvey

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John Garvey

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Pagan tradition revived in Kintbury

MORE than 150 years after the Green Man was last spotted at the Kintbury May Day celebrations, he is back.

Villager Sam Wimbridge revived the ancient pagan tradition at this year’s festivities.

The 19-year-old history enthusiast and former pupil of Kintbury St Mary’s Primary School looked into the history of the Green Man and spent a day putting together an outfit adorned with branches and leaves and decorating his face green.

Mr Wimbridge said: “It’s good to be bringing old traditions back.”

He joined fellow maypole dancers Garston Gallopers and the Kintbury May Maids as they paid homage to this year’s May Day royalty, pupils from Kintbury St Mary’s school, May Queen Sophie Lawrence, May King Jamie Dancey and their attendants Eleanor Clare and Sam Sneath.

The pupils wove colourful ribbons by dancing around the maypole, surrounded by a variety of stalls, including the popular coconut shy, duck shooting and a Year 6 craft club stall.

In all, hundreds of children, parents and other villagers made the most of the afternoon sunshine.

Cath Whittington, who led the organising team for the school PTA, said: “We are very proud to be continuing this village tradition for the benefit of the whole village, while raising valuable funds for the school.”

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