Helston Flora Day

May 13, 2014 by becca.lazar No Comments

The market town of Helston lies midway between Falmouth and Penzance.  For hundreds of years the locals (present and past) have celebrated the wonderful tradition of Flora Day.  Held this year on Thursday May 8th it is a festival celebrating the arrival of Spring. The houses and shops are decorated with floral and greenery arrangements.

Flora Day Helston - midday dance

Dancing starts at 7am led by Helston Town Bank with the ‘Early morning dance’, followed by the children’s dance starting at 9.40am – this year 1200 children danced all dressed in white.  My favourite dance commences at midday where the ladies dress in full length evening gowns and the men wear morning suits with top hats and tails and last of the day is the evening dance at 5pm.

Flora Day Helston -display

At 8am the pageant of Hal-An-Tow takes place with its enacting of historical and mythical themes.

The dances are accompanied by the town’s bands playing ‘The Floral Dance’, the dancers move through the streets, shops, houses and gardens, watched by a town overflowing with spectators from near and far.

Last Thursday the drizzle didn’t really dampen the fantastic atmosphere but did prevent me from taking the best photos so with a couple of photos taken on the day I have added a photo of the exhibition at Helston Museum of knitted characters representing the day’s dances – knitted by local people (including myself)

Flora Day Helston (knitted)

If you enjoy a carnival why not book your holiday to coincide with May 8th next year, phone the Cornish Holiday Cottages office for more information.  Next year’s holiday can be provisionally reserved now.

Have you been to Flora Day? Then add your comments to this blog.

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