West Hallam - Well Dressings
w/e 10 July 2005
All this week's pictures were taken
with a Kodak DX6490
The centre of West Hallam village was closed to through traffic
on Saturday afternoon and any vehicle ignoring the signs would
have had difficulty getting through anyway. Outside the Old Post
Office, a Tea Cup roundabout for the children was blocking most
of the road and the cage that can be seen on the right was full
of more children bouncing on trampolines. There were also many
charity and craft stalls lining both sides of the road.
The event of course was the staging of the annual Well Dressing
Festival -a world famous but unique to Derbyshire tradition.
Similar festivals take place in towns and villages throughout
the county during the summer months and it is possible to visit
a different one nearly every week from the beginning of May until
the end of September. These three young ladies were capturing
"Marie Curie" display on mobile camera-phones. I see
I shall have to watch my back, they'll be starting a web page
There was plenty to keep everyone amused all afternoon in West
Hallam. From a Taekwon-Do display behind the Punchbowl pub and
a wood carver in front of one of the cottages to various dance
groups in the Old School Square and a Pipe Orchestra in St Wilfrid's
Church, the entertainment came thick and fast.
In addition to all that, there was also a Brass Band full of
young musicians outside the Village Hall which was just one of
several places where refreshments could be purchased. I found
it particularly heartening that the band contained so many youngsters
who will hopefully carry the Brass Band tradition on to the next
Some even younger children were having great fun in front of
the well dressing outside the school building in School Square.
Many wells are dressed with a Biblical theme; others feature
topical issues. This one commemorates the end of the Second World
War sixty years ago and features a colourful "V" between
the dates 1945 and 2005. The pictures on the well dressings are
formed by pressing plants and flowers into beds of clay and only
last a few days but the flowers and shrubs in front of the building
will be there for much longer.
There were also natural flowers and beautiful colours in other
village gardens but most of the crowd had their attention on
the dancers in School Square
But probably the star of the show and one that drew most comment
was this well dressing outside the Old Schoolroom. Topical and
bang up to date it featured a portrait of Bob Geldof K.B.E. and
the logo for last week's Live 8 concert and the campaign to "Make
Poverty History". Amazing artistry created from leaves and
flower petals and a credit to the villagers of West Hallam both
for the execution and the sentiment.