New website celebrating May Day festivities in Oxford. Expanding all the time - come back soon

Sumer is icumen in... (photo Tim Healey)

Garland on Hurst Hill, Cumnor, May Day 2005 (photo Edwin Pritchard)

May morning in Oxford is famous for the thousands who gather at 6am to hear a Latin hymn sung from the top of Magdalen College tower.

It is an extraordinary ceremony, but only one feature of Oxford tradition. Maytime revels take place all over the city, and were already controversial in Britain in 1250 when the Chancellor of Oxford University forbade ‘alike in churches, all dancing in masks or with disorderly noises, and all processions of men wearing wreaths and garlands made of leaves of trees or flowers or what not.’

This website honours both the historic celebrations and the joyous spontaneity of revels today. You will find photos, videos and any amount of abstruse information about maypoles and morris and much more besides.

Up the May!

Listening to the choir at Magdalen Tower, May Morning 2016. A record-breaking 25,000 people are reckoned to have attended this year - and and the weather was perfect! (Photo Tim Healey)

The Whirly Band entertains revellers in Broad Street, 1 May 2016 (photo Tim Healey)

Watching the morris at the Bridge of Sighs, May Morning 2016 (photo Tim Healey)

This site is maintained by writer and broadcaster Tim Healey. Thanks to the many friends who have contributed material.

www.timhealey.co.uk

Email contact to right

Click on Menu above for events details, photo gallery, videos and pages on the historic background.

Looking ahead: next May Morning will be Monday 1 May 2017 (a Bank Holiday Monday)

LINKS

Oxford City Council maintains a website devoted to May Day, with important notes on bus transport, road closures and parking.

See https://www.oxford.gov.uk/info/20035/events/559/may_morning_in_oxford  

Daily Information highlights concerts, gigs, and much more. See www.dailyinfo.co.uk/mayday 

Folk in Oxford offers a round-the-year survey of the traditional music scene and how to join in. See www.folkinoxford.co.uk