Monday, November 10, 2008

Monday, November 10, 2008 1:50 pm by Cristina in , , , ,    1 comment
The Telegraph and Argus alerts us to the fact that this coming weekend is 'scroggling the holly' time at Haworth. And not just that, as there are a good many more Christmassy events coming up:
'Tis almost the season to be jolly, so say ‘bah humbug’ to the credit crunch and recession, and instead head for Haworth, which next weekend launches a glittering build-up to Christmas, organised by the village’s traders association.
Around the cobbled streets you can still have a great time without spending a fortune, and what’s more, you could do it virtually every weekend until December 21.
You can get into the festive spirit next weekend with the scroggling parade. The word ‘scroggling’ always makes me laugh and although it has been patiently explained to me that it means the traditional custom of gathering holly, I still don’t understand where the word itself comes from.
On Sunday, bands of Morris Men will lead a traditional procession of children dressed in Victorian costume, who follow the Holly Queen up the cobbles to her crowning ceremony on the church steps.
The newly-crowned Queen then unlocks the church gates to symbolically invite the spirit of Christmas into Haworth. After that it’s the turn of Father Christmas who brings with him glad tidings and Christmas cheer to all. The festivities start at 11am on Saturday, with the procession beginning at 2pm the next day You can join in the atmospheric Victorian Masquerade celebrations on November 22 and 23, by creating your own unique mask and adding to the colourful street festivities. There will be prizes for the best masks, music, dancing and street entertainment, which starts at 11am.
Bringing Christmas even closer, the Pipes, Bows and Bells Weekend on November 29 and 30, features a marching band in their traditional tartan attire and the sound of the pipes. Local Morris Men will perform their seasonal dances, with carol singers and street entertainment adding to the festive atmosphere from 11am.
The following weekend you can experience the magic of panto at Christmas. Go and see many of your favourite panto characters in the shops on Main Street. But don’t just watch it – why not join the many visitors and dress up and take part in the parade? There’s a prize for the best fancy dress.
Highlight of the countdown will be the famous Torchlight Weekend, which will be launched by a lantern parade on the Saturday. Children and adults are invited to join in the procession up Main Street, carrying home-made lanterns.
The following evening, starting at about 5pm, the Christmas procession will be shedding a magical glow on the surroundings.
Gather at the bottom of Main Street, ready for the procession as the sun sets and Main Street glows with the light from hundreds of torches before making its way up the Victorian cobbles. To bring the evening to a suitable conclusion, join in the traditional carol service at St Michael’s Church.
It was 26 years ago when the torchlight procession started – with about half-a-dozen shopkeepers. When the village’s residents and visitors saw it, it took off from there.
Last year was nearly a wash-out, but prayers were answered across the district when torrential rain halted for the event. Hundreds of villagers, tourists and shoppers crammed into Main Street to enjoy the event, led by the Holly Queen, ten-year-old Nuala Carroll, and her Ivy Princess attendants, Caitlin Hatton and Holly Bairstow, both six.
Brighouse and Rastrick Brass Band and Bradford Festival Choral Society entertained everyone as they made their way up the street.
This year, the celebrations will culminate in a completely new event – the Nativity Weekend. Forget how commercial Christmas has become. Go along and enjoy the true meaning of the festive season and join Mary and Joseph in their search for an inn for the night, with local choirs joining together to create a fantastic atmosphere.
As the country fills up with goodwill and merriment, share in festivities which are a world away from the hustle and bustle of Christmas shopping. Enjoy looking round the souvenir and antiquarian bookshops, visit the Bronte Parsonage, take a ride on the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway, or ramble along any one of a number of footpaths leading out of the village, including the most famous walk which leads to the Bronte Stone Chair.
For more details about these events and parking information, contact Haworth Tourist Information Office on (01535) 642329, or visit and (Sue Ward)
Click here to see more information and lots of pictures of all these events.

Also from The Telegraph and Argus comes an article on Bradford's much-needed revamping. Haworth being so near, Andrew McCarthy, Brontë Parsonage Museum director, talks about the current situation at the Museum and the potential impact of such a step:
The current economic climate is another factor for the tourism industry to consider, with many of the district’s top attractions still waiting to see if there will be any long-term impact.
Andrew McCarthy, director of the Bronte Parsonage Museum, in Haworth, said: “The first part of the year was particularly difficult and, in May, we were 18 to 20 per cent down on visitor numbers from the previous year.
“It was looking bleak at that point but we have clawed back a lot of ground through the summer.”
He said it would be interesting to see if market conditions impacted on visitor numbers next year. (Will Kilner)
Thus, putting two and two together: readers in the area or readers from elsewhere who happen to be nearby anytime soon. There's hardly a better excuse to go to Haworth in the coming weeks: Victorian and/or traditional festivities, Christmas shopping and a healthy dose of culture inside the Brontë Parsonage Museum all sound like a perfect combination.

On a completely different note, several Australian newspapers - the Northern News among them - carry an article about horses where Wuthering Heights and its equine family are mentioned:
Johnson is a Bart Cummings type of man. In particular, he followed the bloodlines of the "Heights family", one of the more famous New Zealand racing families, which produced quality stayers such as Battle Heights, Wuthering Heights, Sky Heights and Mapperley Heights. (Phil Wilkins)
As for stage matters, we have added a new review of April De Angelis's Wuthering Heights in Edinburgh to this post. And the Manawatu Standard reviews a current production of The Mystery of Irma Vep at Centrepoint Theatre, Palmerston North, New Zealand.

State of the blogosphere: Ms Austen's 21st Century posts a Jane Eyre-inspired poem. Visual Thoughts has created several Jane Eyre 2006 icons and Dorotie’s Blog reviews the actual novel in Polish. English for Thought recalls a trip to Haworth in 1997.

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1 comment:

  1. In Haworth there will be a celebration over there. Throughout the Christmas period, come and see the magic of Haworth. A Victorian Christmas relived with carols, torchlight procession, an array of lights and trees and Victorian costume and many other attractions. Every weekend throughout this period there will be special Victorian Christmas package.

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