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January 28th, 2011:

Wassailing this Thursday 3rd February

WASSAILING THE NEW TREES: THURSDAY 3 FEB, 7.00 – 7.45 PM AT THE ORCHARD ON HILLY FIELDS

I’m posting Transition Brockley’s mail out, all welcome to join this social event. (No pagan beliefs necessary).

As a first celebration of the orchard, wishing the trees good health (wassailing) is a custom we’d like to embrace. As we are novices, all ideas are welcome and apart from the description at the end of this email (which probably has the main elements of a good wassail), there is a lot of information and YouTube video on the internet if you google “wassailing orchards” to find out more. Some people have very elaborate celebrations but I think we can mould our own particular Brockley version. If anyone wants to write a suitable wassail song for new trees (to a familiar tune), that would be great!

Send us your ideas. We’re all new to this, so it’ll be a fun event to create as a group.

Initial thoughts are for people to bring some warm (apple type of) drink (in thermos) and pieces of toast and something to make a bit of noise (drum, whistle etc), and then we can toast each tree with a splash of warm cider/apple juice, wedge a piece of toast in the wire mesh for the birds, and then have a bit of a bang to scare away any evil spirits or pests which might cause disease. However, we’ll collect your ideas and send an email nearer the date with any specifics.

We’re meeting up at 7.00pm so that it isn’t too late for children to come along.