Unlimited access to The Company of the Green Man newsletter archive is currently available to all of our members for just £10.95
As well as downloadable copies of all fourteen of the e-newsletters produced by myself over the last seven years (all of our e-newsletters are archived when the next one is published) it contains downloadable pdf copies of the original twenty seven Company of the Green Man newsletters published by my predecessor, the wonderful Ronald Miller between 1998 and 2005.
If you are already a member just click on the “How to access the Newsletter Archive” tab at the top of this page and follow the instructions.
If you are not yet a member then you can join up quickly and easily using the “join us” tab above (membership is completely free)
My thanks to Vanessa Piggott for sending in this picture of a cast iron Green Man on a sideboard she discovered in St Mary’s Museum on the Scilly Isles. The sideboard is from the wreck of the Thomas W. Lawson a seven-masted, steel-hulled schooner used to haul coal and oil along the East Coast of the United States. She was launched in 1902 and holds the distinction of being the largest schooner and largest sailing vessel without an auxiliary engine ever built. The Thomas W. Lawson was destroyed off the uninhabited island of Annet, in the Isles of Scilly, in a storm on December 14, 1907, killing all but two of her eighteen crew and a harbor pilot already aboard. Her cargo of 58,000 barrels of light paraffin oil caused perhaps the first large marine oil spill in history.
The inaugural orchard wassail at Mitcham Community Orchard will take place on Saturday 28th January 2017 from 4:30-9pm. The ceremony itself is at 7pm led by the Wassail King and Queen. Also attending are the Black Swan Morris, Rumpledrumskin Drummers and traditional musicians. Entry is free to all. More details at the Sustainable Merton website http://buff.ly/2iTxO0i on their Facebook page @MitchamCommunityOrchard or on Twitter @OrchardMitcham.
If you know of an upcoming Wassail please feel free to post details via the comments link below.
For more information about wassailing you can do no better than search this blog for Bruce Eaton’s previous posting on this fascinating tradition.
I would like to wish all of our members and blog readers a very Happy New Year and a Healthy and Happy 2017.
If you need to escape the post Christmas and New Year blues I would highly recommend the Twelfth Night celebrations on Bankside outside Shakespeare’s Globe starting at 1:45pm on Sunday 8th January 2016.
Twelfth Night is an annual seasonal celebration held in the Bankside area of London. It is a celebration of the New Year, mixing ancient seasonal customs with contemporary festivity. It is free, accessible to all and happens whatever the weather.
To herald the celebration, the extraordinary Holly Man the Winter guise of the Green Man (and an honorary member of The Company of the Green Man) decked in fantastic green garb and evergreen foliage is piped over the River Thames, with the devil Beelzebub.
With the crowd by Shakespeare’s Globe, led by the Bankside Mummers and the London Beadle, the Holly Man will ‘bring in the green’ and toast or ‘wassail’ the people, the River Thames and the Globe (an old tradition encouraging good growth).
Mummers will then process to the Bankside Jetty, and perform the traditional ‘freestyle’ St. George Folk Combat Play, featuring the Turkey Sniper, Clever Legs, the Old ‘Oss and many others, dressed in spectacular costumes. The play is full of wild verse and boisterous action, a time-honoured part of the season recorded since the Crusades.
Cakes distributed at the end of the play have a bean and a pea hidden in two of them. Those from the crowd who find them are hailed King and Queen for the day and crowned with ceremony.
They then lead the people through the streets to the historic George Inn Southwark, for a fine warming-up with the Fowlers Troop, Storytelling, the Kissing Wishing Tree, Dancing and Mulled Wine.
If you go please do take some pictures and send them to me for the blog and if possible perhaps send me a short piece on your experience for the next e-newsletter
You can find more details via the Lions Part website below: