Cider orchard receives traditional ‘blessing’
Annual wassail held to promote harvest and harmony.
A NORTH Devon apple orchard received its annual “blessing” at a cider-soaked ritual on Friday night.
The traditional wassail, held at Ostler’s Cider Mill, near Goodleigh, is designed to scare off bad spirits from the orchards and encourage harmony and good harvest.
The ancient ceremony, observed by South West cider-producing counties since Anglo-Saxon times, was led by local group the Borderline Morris.
Wassailing ‘king and queen’ Ray and Lynn Thorne hung cider-soaked pieces of toast in the branches to feed and encourage birds to stay in the orchard and eat harmful insects. More cider was poured around the base of the trees to nourish the roots.
You may also want to watch:
The ground was then banged with the wassailing stick and shots fired to frighten away any evil spirits before more songs were sung, cider sampled and a delicious feast eaten.
- 1 County Council Elections: Candidates for Torridge
- 2 Small-time drug dealer 'caught red-handed'
- 3 County Council Elections: Candidates for North Devon
- 4 12 countries announced on travel green list from May 17
- 5 Police appeal after Barnstaple brawl
- 6 Dog Restrictions come into force on Westward Ho! Beach
- 7 North Devon seconds look to bounce back from heavy defeat
- 8 Bideford paramedic compensated after winning victimisation claim
- 9 Shocked Barnstaple burglary victim watched raid on phone
- 10 Devon County Council Elections: Candidate lists for North Devon and Torridge