Flamborough and Bempton’s Traditional Boxing Day Celebrations

At both Flamborough and Bempton we are lucky to have such brilliant characters who keep our traditions alive.

The longsword dancing tradition on Boxing Day goes back 100s of years. The team wearing the fisherman’s gansey  (Flamborough pattern of course) with distinctive white trousers, flat cap and checked neckerchief.  The swords are not swords at all, but are said to represent the “needles” which the local fishermen would have used to mend their fishing nets. Some of the steps and intricacies of the dance, are also said to represent the mending of the nets.

The dance starts in Bempton on the White Horse carpark with the first drink and chat of the day. The team with their musicians, then head to Flamborough for the rest of the day. Where later on the junior team joins them, it is fabulous that the dance is still taught in Flamborough Primary School and now we have at least three generations dancing.  All money raised in the collection buckets goes to local charities and a great time is had by all.

Some of the dancers even braved the slightly newer tradition of the Boxing Day Dip, this year (2019) with an 80s theme. The beach at South Landing Flamborough was packed with those taking part and 100s of spectators. Each year this gains more and more particpants and is a great thing to support.