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> Helston Flora Day, details of the Helston Furry Dance
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Catriona 
Posted: 06-Jul-2004, 09:01 AM
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Helston Flora Day

The Helston Flora Day celebrations begin with the 7am dance, closely followed by the 'Hal-an-Tow' Pageant at 8am, an integral part of the celebrations. Starting at St John's, the revellers make their way around the town to designated points to perform the ritual. From Robin Hood and Little John, St George and the Dragon, St Michael and the Devil to the Spaniards of Mousehole, all reinact the battles of 'good defeating evil' to 'drive out the old and welcome in the new'. Everyone can take part in the singing of the traditional Hal-an-Tow song. The children's Dance then begins at around 10 O'Clock with over 1000 children from St Michael's, Nansloe and Parc Eglos Schools, and Helston School & Community College. Although they all wear white, their particular school can be recognised by the colour of the boys' ties and flowers in the girls' head-dresses. Children range from 7 to 18 years of age.

Starting at the Corn Exchange at 12 noon, the Mid-Day or 'Furry' Dance is the most spectacular part of the Flora Day celebrations. Participation is by invitation only and it is a huge honour to be asked to take part. Again from the Corn Exchange, the five O'Clock dance starts. Its dancers are those that participated in the 7am dance. Traditionally, this dance covers the shortest distance of all the dances. This is no doubt due to the fact that Helston Town Band has already led the other three dances around the town and the dancers themselves have already completed a similar route early in the morning.

taken from www.an-daras.com
(This is a good Cornish site!)


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