May gets off to a merry start


May Day, Sunday May 1 saw, Jonathan Breeds elected as Mayor of Rye for a second term, with the Mayor Making celebrations in full swing around the Town Hall, church and then going on to Tilling Green Community Centre.

A soaking for the boot fair

Wondering what else might be on over the day, a visit to Jempson’s superstore at the end of Main Street in Peasmarsh, seemed in order. It hosted a boot fair in the car park, in aid of Rye and District Day Centre.

Bikes on the Quay

On arriving there, the stallholders were just putting out their goods, when a heavy shower left spectators, stallholders and merchandise soaked. It seemed to stop, but was followed by light rain, at which point most of the car booters gave up, leaving about four hardy souls. What a difference from Easter!

The steward gamely continued at his post on the entrance, with bucket. Car drivers coming to the superstore went on stopping by him, with donations. Hopefully, the final amount was not too small for all the efforts made.

Next, having driven home and dried off, we felt Strand Quay seemed a likely place.

What a car!

On arriving, all the bikers there were on their way to Hastings Jack in the Green celebrations, and the picture shows the throng of motorbikes and people. Perhaps it wasn’t raining in Hastings.

Hearing the sounds of sticks being hit together and seeing a crowd gathering, curiosity led across the road, to find a group of morris men outside the little antique shops. Encouraged to perform by an enthusiastic gathering, and accompanied by an accordion, the tinkling of bells and energetic leaps and jumps, they were very entertaining. Some of the tourists from faraway places looked totally bemused, but enchanted.

Bonfire boys

Finally, up to the top of town, passing an amazing parked car (an Aston Martin from the mid 1930s – ed.), squeezing up the high street through more tourists, hopefully spending money to help the local economy. Certainly, all the coffee shops and cafes were very busy.

It was time to go home and see what was going on at Tilling Green.

Hearing the sound of drums some three hours later, along came a small procession made up of the  Town Crier and the Bonfire Boys, duly dressed for the occasion, heading for Tilling Green Community Centre to welcome the mayoral party. Here, there was food, refreshments, stalls and singers, but that’s another story.


Photos: Gillian Roder

Image Credits: Rye News library .

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