“Here’s to thee, old apple tree…”
‘Waes hael. A relatively mild and dry day to pop along to the annual Wassail at the Horfield Organic Orchard. As ever, the event attracts more visitors year on year. This reflects a growing popularity towards these old customs, especially amongst young families.
Wassail is an old pagan custom, where the local community gathers in the apple orchard to awaken and bless the trees. They also scare away evil spirits by banging pots and pans and singing. Following this everyone is invited to make a wish and tie a ‘cloutie’ to the main tree.
Usually held around old Twelfth night, here’s the song that gets sung at the orchard.
“Here’s to thee, old apple tree,
That blooms well, bears well.
Hats full, caps full,
Three bushel bags full,
An’ all under one tree.
More Wassail images here Link