THE SUN shone as crowds flocked to the Western Lawns for the annual Lammas Festival last weekend.
The free festival has been held on the seafront every year since 2001 and this year it was officially opened by deputy mayor Councillor Mike Thompson.
Lammas Festival 2011 started with a carnival procession on the Saturday. The parade started at Eastbourne Pier and arrived at the Western Lawn for the start of the festival. The crowds enjoyed a range of stalls, activities, performances and refreshments at the event.
Hunter’s Moon Morris, Pentacle Drummers and belly dancing from the Sea Gypsies provided entertainment for the two-day festival.
There was also a lifeboat demonstration off the beach on Sunday morning with commentary by the Lifeboat operations manager.
1648 Brewery brew a special Lammas Ale which was available from the beer tent, along with other fine ales and ciders. A range of food was also enjoyed.
The word Lammas comes from the Old English language meaning ‘loaf mass’.
It is a harvest celebration of the Earth’s bounty traditionally held at the cutting of the first corn crop. Lammas is one of the four ancient pagan festivals which were adopted by the early Christian church and are now celebrated by those of all faiths, or none.
A spokesperson from the Lammas Festival Committee said the event was a huge success and raised £1,069.03 for the RNLI.