Wassailing At Ryton Community Orchard

Community OrchardWhy not come along to this year’s annual Wassail at the Ryton Community Orchard.
Initially we meet at the Blacksmith’s Arms at 6:00pm for a procession to the orchard at 6:30pm.
It is traditional to dress up; Top Hats, Bowler hats or hats decorated with ivy or mistletoe, but this is optional. Children may dress up as they wish.
Please bring noise making equipment – saucepan, rattle, anything that will make a noise and torches or lanterns and please wear sensible shoes.
For more information on what a Wassail is, then Wikipedia is a good start, where it explains that ‘wassail‘ is from the old english “wæs hæl”, which means “be you healthy”, but more specifically that it relates to apples and cider. It seems that the purpose of ‘wassailing‘ is to awaken the apples trees and scare away the evil spirits, hence why the details of the event ask you to bring along anything that makes a noise.
Wassailing is a an English traditional ceremony that was most common in the southern cider producing counties of England that involves singing and drinking to the health of the apples trees for their forthcoming season and as such usually takes place as part of the Twelfth Night (after Christmas) celebrations.
The Project Britain website details a little more about wassailing and mentions it as one of many other Twelfth Night celebrations.