West Hallam - Well Dressing & Scarecrow Trail
w/e 18 July 2010
All this week's pictures were taken with a Kodak DX6490
Well Dressing & Scarecrow Trail

The West Hallam Well Dressing Festival has been a regular attraction in the village during July for several years and last year saw the introduction of a new feature - the Scarecrow Trail. This proved to be very successful and once again has been incorporated into the festival. We visited the village on Sunday afternoon.

Readers' Group Panel

There are usually two large well dressings and several smaller ones at various locations in the old part of the village and the large display by the the West Hallam Readers' Group managed to combine the art of well dressing with an image of a scarecrow in this panel in School Square.
School Square

Sunday was one of the better days to visit as the weather had still not broken and there were fewer people about which made it much easier to inspect the wells and the scarecrows than at the opening event the previous day. It was still quite busy in School Square as people wandered between the displays. The Readers' Group panel can be seen here on the right with more panels and scarecrows on the left. Bunting added to the festival atmosphere and we were tempted along the road to Hall Court (centre) by the sight of more scarecrows.
Hall Court

The ominous figure of Darth Vada complete with light sabre seemed to be guarding the entrance to Hall Court which is overlooked by the tower of St Wilfrid's Church, another site on our annual sojourn to the festival.
The Village

To reach the church we returned via School Square and through The Village passing another selection of dressings and scarecrows. A barrel organ soothed the reclining scarecrow in the deck chair and a tableau of characters from "The Wizard Of Oz" stood adjacent to a well dressing by the Community Pre-School.
Help For Heroes

Also nearby on a more serious note this panel drew everyone's attention to the Help For Heroes charity and the "Thank You" box collected donations to help their work with our wounded men and women in the Armed Forces.
Ilkeston Brass

Another attraction on Sunday afternoon was a performance by Ilkeston Brass in the packed courtyard (right) at the side of the old school. All the seats were taken and it was standing room only on the road outside (left) but the music could be heard all over the old village. Peering through the hedge from the road I was able to get the shot above of some of the musicians.
Round Well

The other large well dressing in the village, known as the Round Well, was the circular one in its customary position outside the old school. This year it featured a design showing J. M. Barrie and Peter Pan to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Barrie's birth. All the rights to "Peter Pan" were donated by Barrie to Great Ormonde Street Hospital for children and the hospital still benefits from his generous gift today.
David & Goliath

Heading up the drive towards the church we were met by two more scarecrows, David and Goliath and the adjacent tree had been labelled the Prayer Tree. Slips of paper were available to write prayer requests which were then attached to the tree.
Teddy Tower Slide

A notice at the end of the drive had advertised the "Teddy Tower Slide" stating that it was back by popular demand and Teddy Bears would be sliding down a zip wire. We were just in time to see the latest brave bear slide down to the welcoming arms below.
American Adventure

Before returning home we drove all around the village - both the old and the new parts - and there were many scarecrows all over the place worthy of a picture but this particular one near the Mapperley crossroads had caught my eye on the way to West Hallam so that's where I stopped. The trio of Uncle Sam, Mickey and Minnie Mouse were part of a display called "American Adventure" and all three showed that you don't have to be dressed in rags to be a scarecrow these days.

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