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British Life and Culture

by Mandy Barrow

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British life and culture - England, Scotland and Wales
May Day

Introduction to May Day | Maypole Dancing | Morris Dancing

May Day in the Past | May Day Today | Well Dressing | The month of May

May QueenThe first day of the month of May is known as May Day. It is the time of year when warmer weather begins and flowers and trees start to blossom. It is said to be a time of love and romance. It is when people celebrate the coming of summer with lots of different customs that are expressions of joy and hope after a long winter. copyright of

Traditional English May Day celebrations include Morris dancing, crowning a May Queen and dancing around a Maypole.

Maypole dancing
Maypole Dancing - a traditional dance at this time of year

The beginning of Summer

Although summer does not officially begin until June, May Day marks its beginning. May Day celebrations have been carried out in England for over 2000 years.

The Romans celebrated the festival of Flora, goddess of fruit and flowers, which marked the beginning of summer. It was held annually from April 28th to May 3rd.

May Day in Scotland

"I come from a town in Scotland called Turriff. We celebrate May day on the 1st Monday of May every year. The roads are closed off to traffic from 10am - 4pm, we have a funfair at the local park, we have lots off stalls in the town & different activities & going on throughout the day, the Local pipeband (Turriff & Disrtrict Pipeband) march round the town playing. Its a fantastic day out for all & attracts crowds of people to Turriff. "

May Day Bank Holiday

The month of May has many traditions and celebrations. For the convenience of the general public, many May Day activities have now been moved to the new May Day holiday (from 1978) on the first Monday of the month. This Monday is a bank holiday, a day off school and work.

Many of the May Day celebrations take place at the weekend as well as on the 'May Day' Monday. The weekend is know as bank holiday weekend because it comes with the extra day holiday on the Monday.

Maypole Dancing next pag

Are there any special foods for this celebration? No

Is there any special person associated with this holiday? No

Are there special types of clothing for the celebration of May Day?

People who are performing dress up. See Morris dancing

Introduction to May Day | Maypole Dancing | Morris Dancing

May Day in the Past | May Day Today | Well Dressing

Back to folklore and facts about the month of May


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© Copyright Mandy Barrow 2014

Mandy is the creator of the Woodlands Resources section of the Woodlands Junior website. 
The two websites and are the new homes for the Woodlands Resources.

Mandy left Woodlands in 2003 to work in Kent schools as an ICT Consultant.
She now teaches computers at The Granville School and St. John's Primary School in Sevenoaks Kent.

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