7 May 2012 - Petts Wood May Queen Parade

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Some old bangers get ready for the parade
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The weather for the Petts Wood May Queen celebrations was chilly but thankfully dry. The procession was larger than in previous years with an excellent samba band called Bloco Fogo leading the way. They were followed by the Petts Wood May Queen in a fantastic vintage car with her "courtiers" walking close behind. Last but not least was Kettle Bridge Clogs accompanied by their band.

The colourful procession made its way through Petts Wood with good sized crowds lining the streets for most of the way. The contrast between the exotic and seductive rhythms of Bloco Fogo and the precision dancing of Kettle Bridge made for a fascinating experience, much appreciated by the spectators. If you get a chance to see Bloco Fogo in action, I urge you to take it. The only down side was that the natural tempo of their walking made for slow progress and Kettle Bridge had to do more "treading water" moves than they would normally do in a procession. We also must thank the police who as ever did an excellent job of keeping the traffic under control, ensuring the safety of everyone involved.

At the half way point of the procession, as usual we passed under a railway bridge and, for once, Alan did not win the prize for making the loudest drum beat. The parade continued and as we made our way back to the town centre, there were definitely more spectators around. After a quick loop round by the station, the procession passed the funfair and entered the Memorial Hall, the final stopping place.

Inside the hall, the local mayor crowned the new May Queen, and, after clearing a suitable space within the hall, Kettle Bridge danced Sidcot and Cossington, which were much appreciated by the crowd.

With the formal events out of the way, the dancers and the band could enjoy the fair, which seemed to be significantly larger than in previous years. There was much to see, although no-one seemed brave enough to get too near to the snakes. The coffee van and cake stalls were much more popular!

Finally it was back to Sally's place for a well-earned spot of rest and refreshment. Thank you to Sally and Peter for hosting!