Bournville Village Maypole
In 2013 the Festival celebrated its 111th Anniversary and, although the content has changed over the years, the Maypole has always been an important central item and has now become a great tradition belonging to Bournville.
The Bournville Maypole
- Come Lassies and Lads
- Heralds announce the arrival of the Festival Queen, preceded by the Retiring Queen
- The Crowning of the Queen
- Petal girls
- Step by Step
- The Gypsies Tent
- Dance of the gypsies
- String girls doing the Chain
- String girls doing the Queens basket
- Barber pole
- Merrily we dance around
- Soldiers of the Queen
- The Finale
The production, presentation and dressing of the Maypole dancers is the voluntary work of the Bournville Village Council, the children and the parents.
The History of the Bournville Village Maypole
In 1902 in common with the rest of the country, the small village of Bournville (then only 400 homes) decided to celebrate the Coronation of King Edward VII and this was held on 2nd July.
The first Festival was so greatly enjoyed that it was decided to make it an annual event with the Maypole being the centrepiece.
The original Festival Committee was formed into the Bournville Village Council in 1903 and since that time, has organised the festival as well as being the local Resident’s Association.
During the First World War the Festival came to a halt but recommended in 1919 and continued until 1939 when, once again, war brought it to a stop. During the Second World War performances were given on Rowheath Playing fields but, when peace came, the Festival began again at Cadbury. With about 120 girls and boys, the Bournville Maypole is one of the largest – possibly the largest – Maypole in Europe. The present metal Maypole was first used in the 1973 Festival.