Noisy neighbours wake up trees

By Harriet Ernstsons Friday 03 January 2014 Updated: 03/01 09:20

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Buy photos » Janet Hemming, Steve Pound, Lee Jennings, Holly Pound, Graham Hemming, Neil Marsh and Louis Marsh prepare for the Wassail. Picture by Pip Taylor. (s)

THE NOISIEST event in Headless Cross’ calendar is set to take place this month.

Noisy revellers will be ensuring a fruitful harvest later in the year by gathering at the district’s community orchard for the third annual wassail.

Starting at The Rocklands Social Club at 7.30pm on Saturday, January 11, the procession will walk to the green where a ceremony to awaken the trees will take place.

Orchard volunteer Alistair Waugh said: “Bring your saucepans, drums, noisy neighbours and tankards, we’re set for another loud wassail.

“This ancient folk tradition is a reminder of our connection with nature and the harvest it provides. It’s a great way of celebrating our orchard and digging into the depths of Worcestershire customs. Community orchards are one of the ways that local people can ensure an abundance of fruit into the future, whilst keeping tradition and old fruit varieties alive.”

Led by Bromsgrove’s town crier, the ceremony will involve an executioner and wassail queen Holly Pound who will drape cider-soaked toast in the tree branches while music will be provided by Arrow Valley Brass Band.

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