Ashmore - Filly Loo. A celebration of the longest day, held on a Friday near to June 21st, when villagers dance beside this singular village pond (it is high on the chalk). The Hambledon Hopstep Band play and call from a cart decorated in greenery to the crowd, dancing in the street. A Green Man arrives in a procession and takes part in the first dance to start the evening. There are display dances followed by public dancing, then at dusk, the celebrations reach their climax with the Abbots Bromley Horn Dance. This is a torchlit procession with six antlered deer-men and four other costumed characters: a Maid Marion, a bowman, a hobby horse and a fool. The procession and dance is accompanied by a haunting solo melody in a minor key which is very atmospheric. The celebration finishes with the torches in the ground around the pond and everyone holding hands around the pond for the last dance. Contact +44(0)1747 811413.
Badbury Rings - see Glow Worms here during July.
Buckhorn Weston has a Maypole.
Cerne Abbas - May Day celebrations - On May 1st, Wessex Morris Men dance above the Cerne Abbas Giant at dawn (around 5.20am). They then walk down the hill collecting may and dance and process through Cerne Abbas accompanied by the Dorset Ouser (or Ooser), a horned animal-like figure. Contact Alan Cheeseman on +44(0)1258 880451.
Green Men of Dorset
The great chalk giant at Cerne Abbas is perhaps holding a holly club in his hand like the Green Knight. read about the giant's STAYING POWER ...
Kingston Lacy - Snowdrops on the National Trust estate in February.
Pamphill - Snowdrops at the cemetery in February.
Sturminster Newton - The Cheese Festival has taken place annually since 1999, around the second weekend in September, with events, performances, and an opportunity to sample cheeses from across the region. On the first Sunday in December, the Stour Descent canoe race begins at Sturminster Mill, continuing down the River Stour to Bryanston. Contact Peter Carter at the Stour Valley Canoe Club +44(0)1202 602757.
Symondsbury - Mummers Play, on New Year's Day, outside the Ilchester Arms.
Tarrant Hinton - The Great Dorset Steam Fair in September. See the fair's web-site for latest information.
Apple Day, October 21st
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