|Where:||Madron, Cornwall -field next to church, Liskeard - Bolitho Farm|
|When:||1st Friday in September and other dates in month|
|Time:||6.30 pm (both Liskeard and Madron)|
Crying the Neck is a West Country harvest custom where a corn dolly is made from the last sheaf and is hung in church for the year. The origins of the custom may lie in pagan sacrifice, with the last cut of the harvest symbolically killing the harvest spirit – there are a few theories – as the harvesters chant an ancient rhyme. The custom has been revived in several locations but perhaps the best known are at Liskeard and at Madron, so I’ve used these locations as an example of what happens. The sheaf is cut in a field near the village church and a short service follows,then a traditional Cornish supper with heavy cake and pasties.
In 2016 the Liskeard Ceremony was on Friday September 2nd at Bolitho Farm, Maudlin and the Madron ceremony was on Monday September 19th near the Chapel.
In 2017 the Liskeard Ceremony will be on Friday 1st September (to be confirmed).
In the past the ceremony took place on the first Friday in September but in some instances it’s now a more flexible date within the month.For a full programme of this and similar ceremonies click here : http://www.oldcornwall.net
Photo by Barry Ennor.
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