Saturday, 2 September 2017

The Rushbearing Parade Passes By.

The Rushbearing is an annual parade held in Sowerby Bridge, West Yorkshire traditionally on the first weekend in September. The following was taken from Wikipedia describing it's historic origins, Rushbearing is an old English ecclesiastical festival in which rushes are collected and carried to be strewn on the floor of the parish church. The tradition dates back to the time when most buildings had earthen floors and rushes were used as a form of renewable floor covering for cleanliness and insulation. The festival was widespread in Britain from the Middle Ages and well established by the time of Shakespeare but had fallen into decline by the beginning of the 19th century, as church floors were flagged with stone.

The current Sowerby Bridge Rushbearing was revived in 1977 and this year celebrates a continuous 40 years of celebration with the parade, shops, crafts, bands and dancing. Traditionally the revelries start on a Friday evening with a get-together at a local pub, before getting down to the parade on a Saturday morning. The first days march tends to start at Warley St John's Church before heading down the valley to Sowerby Bridge stopping at a number of pubs along the route for morris dancing and bands to entertain, as well as stopping at Christ Church and St Paul's Church in the town. The day tends to end with a get-together and celebration in one of the towns public houses. Sunday's celebrations tend to start with a church service at St Peter's Church, Sowerby before moving on through the villages of Cottonstones, Triangle, and finishing at St Bartholomew's Church, Ripponden with a songs of praise service.

For more information please take a moment to view the website of the Rushbearing at,

The video can be viewed below or on YouTube, sadly due to the really poor sound quality I have had to change the background music, this does not in my opinion take away from the parade going past. The music I have overlaid is Ceremonial Medley by the United States Marine Band.

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