Monday 29 May

charles II

The origins of this custom are unclear; some speculate that it was originally a pagan fertility ritual but more recently it has come to be associated with the commemoration of the restoration to the throne of King Charles II, with the garland symbolising the oak tree that the King hid in after the Battle of Worcester in 1660.

Held annually on Oak Apple Day (normally May 29th although if this falls on a Sunday, the event is usually but not exclusively held on the 28th instead), this is a major event in the Hope Valley calendar and one that draws an amazing crowd.

The main feature of the Garland Day is the King. Dressed in Stuart attire and encased from the waist up in a cone or bell shaped floral garland, the King rides through Castleton at the head of a parade.

Tmaypole dancinghe King takes his Consort and leads the procession to each of the pubs in the village before having his garland removed and placed on the top of St Edmund’s Church, which has been dressed for the occasion in a beautiful display of flowers and leaves from the gardens in the village. The smaller Queen’s wreath, which has been sitting atop the garland, is separated at this point and arranged at the war memorial.

The crowds are entertained by local bands such as Castleton Silver Band and by young girls dancing and carrying mini maypoles. The celebrations continue in the market place, with more music and traditional dancing.  The crowd then gathers at the War Memorial, where the King leads the commemoration of those from the village who died in the wars. The day ends with the band playing in the street while people dance, then everyone makes their way to the local pubs!
HHS Line
While every effort is made to ensure accuracy, Hope Valley Online is not the organiser of this event and dates may be subject to change.  Please check with event organisers before travelling.