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Maypole, the raising of the

Maypole, the raising of the
Undated. Image shows a man half way up the Maypole as part of the raising ceremony in the centre of Barwick in Elmet. Traditionally, the ceremony took place verey three years, with the lowering on Easter Tuesday and the raising on Spring Bank Holiday Tuesday. Over the years the 96ft Maypole (approx 29 metres) has been carried from Hall Tower Field, to be errected using ladders and ropes, in a natural limestone hole near the Cross. Villages have then packed the hole with soil. A young man is chosen to shin up the Maypole and untie the ropes and traditionally 'spin the fox' a weather vane at the top of the pole. Nowadays, for health and safety reasons and insurance purposes, a crane is employed to lift the Maypole into the hole but many of the traditions surrounding the ceremony have been tratined.

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