When: 23rd & 24th June 2018
Where: Chester, Cheshire
£: Free to watch
What is it?
The Midsummer Watch Parade will take place this weekend in Chester, with mythical beasts, giants and Medieval foolery. This 500 year old tradition will see one of the oldest and most colourful parades in the country head through the city centre.
This unusual and lively parade will begin at 2pm on Saturday and Sunday from the Town Hall Square, making its way along the streets with drummers, Morris dancers, devils, unicorns, a white stag, Roman soldiers, dragons, a camel, an elephant, a sun, a giant fish and the Green Man (amongst many other characters). This eclectic line-up of giants and beasts is a sight not to be missed!
For a flavour of the parade, watch last year’s event below…
The Midsummer Watch is an old tradition dating back to Medieval and Tudor times when pageants were more commonplace. Chester was renowned for its parade that featured a family of giants, as well as a unicorn, elephant, camel and dragon. Hobby horses, musicians, children and fools would also accompany the parade. Although banned several times, the parade managed to survive until the 1670s.
The parade wasn’t properly revived again until 1990, and since 2000 there have been more unique additions to the parade, including the white stag, a three metre tall blue coat boy and a giant raven.