When: 24th August 2013 at 9pm
Where: West Witton, near Leyburn, Yorkshire Dales, North Yorkshire
What is it?
The Burning of Old Bartle is a traditional custom that takes place annually in Yorkshire. There are various theories surrounding the origins of the Burning of Old Bartle and who or what exactly Bartle was.
Every year in the village of West Witton a large figure is paraded down the village main street accompanied by repeated chants of the Bartle doggerel. At the end of the parade ‘Bartle’ is set alight to the cheers of the crowd.
Explanations of Bartle include it being a wooden statue dedicated to St Bartholomew that was ransacked during the reformation; that Bartle was a notorious sheep thief chased around the village; a pig-farming giant killed by the villagers.
No one knows for sure how the tradition started but it probably began in pagan times when harvest rituals were commonplace. This tradition has survived in some form or another to become the event it is today.
More info: www.burningbartle.org.uk