Tag Archives: Tradition

New Forest: autumn activity, tradition and festival

Autumn is always a busy season for farmer, smallholder and commoner alike. It is also a time of ritual, tradition, and festival that reminds us of our connection to the natural or, indeed, supernatural world. Michaelmas, which signals the end … Continue reading

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New Forest: celebrating a Victorian Christmas

The traditions of Christmas that many of us enjoy, such as sending Christmas cards, bringing fir trees into our homes and decorating them, and eating turkey, were not observed prior to the nineteenth century. Queen Victoria and her husband, Albert, … Continue reading

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New Forest: autumn drifts in!

A sure sign of autumn in the commoner’s calendar is the commencement of the pony drifts that take place each year. The drifts are round-ups that are conducted by the Agisters and commoners, which aim to collect together as many … Continue reading

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New Forest: Christmas customs and traditions

Christmas is a time for celebration, merry social gatherings and observing Yuletide customs. In the New Forest during times past traditional mummers plays were performed at Christmas. The plays were usually folk dramas, often featuring Father Chrismas, the heroic figure of … Continue reading

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Autumn: the season of tradition and heritage

Autumn is a time when the traditional rural practices and cultural heritage of the New Forest come alive. The annual drifts, or pony round-ups, that were ordered by Henry VIII in 1540, are in full progress and are still conducted … Continue reading

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New Forest: Kindness can kill ponies born to be free

With spring definitely beginning to establish its influence on the landscape it is getting near the time of year when my recently purchased New Forest ponies will be going back out on the Open Forest to roam free. My two … Continue reading

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Learning to be a Commoner on the New Forest

I recently had a meeting at the Verderer’s Office in Lyndhurst to progress my status to a ‘practicing’ New Forest commoner. The Verderer’s Clerk, whom I met with, was very friendly and answered all my questions with cheerful enthusiasm. I … Continue reading

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