I promise I'll not mention it too often but I am getting a little bit excited as its not long now till the best weekend of the year for this little household. The Jack in the Green weekend was revived in its current format 27 years ago and is a weekend of Morris Dance, music and fun before on the Monday the main event of Jack being released.
There are various characters in the parade:
The Jack; the centrepiece of the celebrations Jack-in-the-green is a traditional May Day figure. He may be a garland that has expanded in size dating from the 17th century but to others He is also a representation of The Green Man in his various forms.
The Bogies and Black Sal; The bogies are Jacks protectors, staying with him till the end ensuring his safety and "greening" anyone on the way. Sal is Jacks consort and also stays with Him till the end.
The Sweeps; Possibly the reason that the Jack started as he currently looks, the sweeps made the garland that eventually grew in size to cover a whole man.
The Giants; They have become part of the festival over the years celebrating a history of gianting through out Europe and representing various characters such as Herne and Andred.
Morris sides; Mad Jacks (responsible for this revival), Hannah's Cat and visiting sides show off their talents throughout the weekend before joining in the parade.
Rhythm Sections: And lastly the Drummers. Different groups, Section5, Pentacle Drummers, Rumpledrumskin and Sambalanco add the toe taping, body moving beats that will rumble throughout the town for the weekend. Various drummers have in past years helped welcome in the Dawn on Beltane plus a Drum Off on the Sunday.
Throughout the weekend there is a lot of music and dance. If anyone is interested in seeing the programme then visit the Jack-in-the-Green site for the list.
30 days to go! yippee, now best get on with finishing the costumes...