Look what Tilly found on the hill behind our house....
Jubilee Weekend in a Dartmoor village (Part 2)

Jubilee Weekend in a Dartmoor village (Part 1)

The Town Crier and his two assistants

The celebration was opened on Saturday morning by the official Town Crier...

Beatroute 4

 ...followed by the thundering samba rhythms of Beat Route (an all-age drumming group) as they processed into the village Square...

Beatroute 6*

Beatroute 7*

...and then up the High Street...

Procession along the High Street

...past queen-themed statues and scarecrows (which are scattered all around the village)...



...to the Cross Tree by the old church cottages....

Beatroute 3x

...where the yellow roses are in bloom.

Roses on a cottage wall

Meanwhile, back in the Square, there were Morris Dancers...

Morris Men 1

Morris Men 3

Morris Men 2

and Broom Dancers...


and Maypole Dancers...

Maypole 1

Maypole 2

Maypole dancing

...followed by a cup of tea at Blacks, served up with mid-day jazz from Hot Club du Square.

PeterShields 1

Peter's band 2

Tilly 3

We finished just in time to see William Todd-Jones (on stilts, as is his wont) leading a procession of children from the village school, wearing costumes and carrying puppets they'd made during the last week in a workshop with Todd and Wendy Froud.

Puppets 7

Puppets 8

Puppets 9

Puppets 10

The young puppeteers gave two exuberant performances in the Square...and while I confess I couldn't really make out the story from my place in the crowd, it sure looked lively: full of music and color and hares on stilts and leaping horse puppets and singing puppet cakes and packs of cards. Towering over it all was the Queen, of course...and another character who was described to me as the "Mad Tinner" ... but I might have gotten that all wrong!

Puppets 3

Puppets 1


Puppets 6

Afterwards, we whisked off to a village nearby (even smaller and more picturesque than ours), where Howard and Beat Route had another gig that night -- but it was absolutely tipping down with rain by then, so I have no pictures, alas. You'll just have to image a very wet group of drummers, who seemed to be doing a rain dance as the rain fell harder and harder. (The Queen can blame them for the weather on Sunday, turning her River Pageant into a painting by Turner.)

Part II tomorrow....