Hastings Old Town pubs hold Twelfth Night revels
Today (Monday January 6) is Twelfth Night - the 12th day of Christmas when Christmas trees and decorations have to come down to avoid bad luck.
Traditionally in England it was also a day of revelry and games with wild parties and colourful characters.
Two Hastings Old Town pubs will be upholding the tradition today with lots of fun events including a wassail ceremony and a crowning of the King and Queen of the festivities.
The fun starts with a gathering at the Jenny Lind, in the High Street, at 3pm with music from Forty Shillings on the Drum.
The Lord of Misrule will ceremoniously hand round pieces of Twelfth Night Cake at 5pm. The pair who find a hidden pea and bean in their slice will then be crowned King and Queen of the event.
The party will then walk in procession through George Street to the Albion pub.
People coming along are encouraged to wear fancy dress. Ending the Christmas season with a Twelfth Night Party is a great excuse for dressing up – cross-dressing, wearing masks, wigs, beards and other disguises. Themes for Twelfth Night Characters could be – historical, pantomime, theatrical, comical, seasonal, fairy-tale, nursery rhyme or Shakespearian.
Some typical names of Twelfth Night Characters include Toby Tipple, Lord Flirt-Away, Sir Fopling Flutter, Sir Tunbelly Clumsy, Billy Pantaloon, Sir Harry Hard-To-Please, Sir Gorbelly Gobblegoose, Miss Frolic, Lord Spendthrift and Lady Racket.
A wassail bowl of hot spiced cider will be passed around at the Albion at 6pm..
The ceremony includes dancing around the Albion ‘Apple Tree’, guarded by a ‘Tit’ sitting amongst the branches. There will be singing and chanting and a Twelfth Cake will be placed on the horn of the ‘Best Ox’.
A party gets underway at the Albion from 7pm with live music to dance to.