Lammas festival fun over the weekend

Lammas Festival
Lammas Festival

The annual Lammas Festival takes place this weekend (July 27-28, from 11am ).

The weekend raises money for the Royal National Lifeboat Institution, and has raised over £10,000 since the festival began in 2001.

Visitors will get the chance to see local artists performing traditional music, dance, crafts and story telling as well as browsing through the different stalls.

Councillor Carolyn Heaps said, “The Lammas Festival is always a joy to get involved with and I look forward to seeing the different dancers, drummers and other entertainers. There is something for everyone to see and all on our lovely seafront.”

The annual event brings plenty of entertainment with a band line up including The Equatorial group, Gadzooks it’s Lackadaisy, Matt Cooper, Blueshift jazz, Mr Western and the Ironing and Black Strap Molasses.

There is also a range of dance groups, story tellers and the Pentacle Drummers, who will lead the procession on Saturday (12pm).

This year, Eastbourne Lifeboat will stage a demonstration on Sunday in the sea by the festival site at around 11am, showing visitors what great work they do.

Sunday rounds off with an open-air ceilidh (4.30pm) led by The Howlers giving the festival crowd a chance to get involved in the action. Visitors can expect to find special Lammas ale in the beer tent called 1648 brewery brew, along with other fine ales and ciders.

Lammas is a harvest celebration of the Earth’s bounty traditionally held at the cutting of the first corn crop. It is one of the four ancient pagan Celtic fire festivals which were adopted by the early Christian church.

The figure of John Barleycorn symbolises the crop at harvest-time and leads the carnival procession which opens the festival on Saturday, leaving Eastbourne Pier at around noon.

John Barleycorn reappears later on Saturday for the Lammas Ritual when Hunters Moon perform a special dance in his honour. Cavendish Bakery will create a fabulous harvest loaf for this ceremony where all are welcome to attend.