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Museum News

Tree Dressing, 6 December 2015

By 28 November 2015January 11th, 2021No Comments

Our annual Tree Dressing day at the Museum is a magical occasion for all the family. Based on an ancient custom that celebrates the life-giving properties of trees, Tree Dressing takes place during National Tree Week.

With its origins in the Green Man legends and other ancient customs, visitors to the Tree Dressing day can enjoy (and join in with) traditional songs, dances, plays and stories which celebrate trees and the natural world.

Visitors are invited to make a lantern during the afternoon, which is then lit for a procession around the Museum’s downland site.

The lanterns are then hung in two aspen trees, making a spectacular display of colour and light to brighten a winter afternoon.

The day’s finale takes place as darkness falls, with a spiral dance around the aspen trees, which are dressed with hundreds of lanterns. Younger visitors are well catered for, with lantern and headdress making.

Tree Dressing has been enjoyed by our visitors for many years and is in harmony with our aim of keeping the traditions of the rural past alive for future generations.

Winter warmers will be on offer, including mulled cider, mulled apple juice, spiced biscuits and roasted chestnuts (for a small donation).

The Museum is open from 10.30am on Sunday 6 December, with the Tree Dressing event starting at 12.00 noon. Regular admission prices apply (free for Annual Members).

Please arrive in good time in order to participate in lantern-making – the lighting of the lanterns will begin at 3.20pm and the final procession commences at 3.45pm and closes the day.

We hope that you can join us for this wonderful event.