Saturday, 19 December 2009
GRASSINGTON'S DICKENSIAN FAIR
These "Dickensian" ladies were eager to have a go at the Tombola!
It was a very happy, crowded and jolly day, cold of course, but mulled wine and a hot roast pork sandwich soon warmed us up. And a hand-warming handful of roasted chestnuts, better than gloves any day.People had come to it from all over: a splendid Scot from Forfar in his equally splendid kilt; people from Wales and Liverpool and Sussex. They had all been before and loved it; I had only just come to hear of this annual event, but I too fell in love with it, returning home with, among other things, a treasured pot of homemade marmalade, truly the best I've ever spread on my toast.
There were brass bands, jugglers, and barrel organs, Mummery and Jiggery, acapella carol singing, and towards twilight a procession with a young Mary and Joseph, and the donkey, led round the town by the Town Crier, knocking at the pub doors and three times refused, before they were offered "a shed round the back".
They were followed by a crowd bearing burning torches and if after that cheering sight you were still cold, well, there were always the braziers depicted above for a
quick blast of heat!