Thursday, 14 April 2011

Protest to save May Day

Morris dancers, drummers, May Queens, Jack in the Greens, hobby horses and many others will be taking a protest to Parliament on April 18 to try to stop David Cameron scrapping the May Day Bank Holiday.

The protesters have been given the use of Old Palace Yard, immediately to the west of the Houses of Parliament, from 12 noon until 1pm for a demonstration, after which a petition will be handed over.

Organisers are expecting hundreds of people to join in the demonstration on Monday lunchtime, aimed at halting Government plans to shift the popular annual holiday from the start of May to October. The event should be worth watching too, as Morris Dancers and Jack in the Green troupes from all over the country will be congregating to dance, drum and wave placards.

The event is intended to be a peaceful demonstration. On the Facebook page We Do Not Want to Lose the May Day Bank Holiday, organisers say: "Please remember that this is a peaceful non-party political event with the aim of persuading The Government to keep the May Day Bank Holiday. We are not here to protest about anything else or to show our discontent with the government. We need to concentrate on the one issue of the May Day Bank Holiday, and do it peacefully with good humour; anything else could damage our case."

The website adds that Morris Dancing, drumming and placard-waving should only be done in the designated place between midday and 1pm and reminds protesters: "After the official end of the protest at 13:00 we are all ordinary pedestrians so please no more demonstrating. If you do so you could be arrested for having an unauthorised demonstration."

My personal opinion is that it would be good to keep May Day as a national holiday, but also have another holiday on October 31 - the festival of Samhain. That way we could celebrate the start and end of summer in traditional style.

The photo shows the Houses of Parliament, taken by me on a stormy day in 2008

Links and previous posts:
http://www.hastingsobserver.co.uk/news/local-news/taking_may_day_fight_for_jack_to_parliament_1_2587078
http://www.selfs.org.uk/2011/03/23/may-days-in-london-jack-in-the-green-and-beyond/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Old_Palace_Yard
http://www.badwitch.co.uk/2010/05/pagan-eye-jack-in-green.html
http://www.badwitch.co.uk/2009/05/beltane-frolics-and-may-day-dancing.html

1 comment:

Ms Lilypads said...

I hope the May Day is saved.