Traditional Fernhurst fête joins 21st century

Fernhurst Primary School maypole dancers
Fernhurst Primary School maypole dancers

The Revels have been a tradition in Fernhurst for more than 100 years.

They will be held at the Pavillion Recreation Ground, next to the Red Lion pub, in The Green, on Sunday, May 21.

The new May Queen is crowned after a procession through the village, followed by maypole dancing and St George fighting the Dragon.

Fernhurst is now in the 21st century, though, with laser tag offering something for the teenagers to do.

Keeping up with the times, the posters advertising the Fernhurst Revels have a QR code so anyone with a smartphone and the right app can access the web page quite easily.

There is a grassy picnic area on which to sit and, as usual, there will be teas, cakes, beer and ice creams for visitors to enjoy.

The George Regis Jazz band has reformed and it has been renamed George’s Coastline Jazz Band, which will be playing New Orleans trad jazz to entertain the crowds.

There will be two arenas, one for the fun dog show, the other for everything from the crowning of the May Queen at the start to the falconry display and the Southdowns Ukulele Orchestra, children’s races and fancy dress.

The Revels is a wonderful family day out organised by a small team of volunteers, who help make it a special day for Fernhurst.

Chairman Heather Bicknel said: “The emphasis is on having fun, with a variety of events throughout the afternoon.

“The stalls are run by local people, raising funds for village facilities, clubs and charities, so come and join in.”

The procession starts at Napper’s Wood at 12.30pm and weaves through the village to the recreation ground.

The May Queen will be crowned at 1pm, followed by St George fighting the dragon, maypole dancing by pupils from Fernhurst Primary School and the fancy dress competition, themed ‘edibles’.

The fun dog show starts at 1.45pm, Punch and Judy is at 1.45pm and 2.45pm, and there is a falconry display at 2pm and 3.15pm.

During the afternoon, there will also be a veteran, vintage and classic car show and the Petersfield Bowmen.