Celebrating Spaw Sunday in Midgley

Midgley villagers will once again be celebrating Spaw Sunday, a traditional May Day event where the village’s wells are decorated and celebrations held to mark the historic importance of the wells to village life.

Midgley has over 15 wells dotted around the village, hidden in roadside walls and field corners, tucked away down ginnells and secreted behind houses. They are fed by a complex system of ancient underground culverts and springs, and were once a vital source of water for the village’s houses and businesses.

Around a dozen of the more accessible wells will be decorated by local residents and school children, to highlight these heritage features.

Midgley Community Forum is organising a Spaw Sunday walk, where each of the decorated wells will be visited in turn. Readings and poetry celebrating aspects of village life and nature will be recited by local children.

Forum representative John Benson said: “Last year’s Spaw Sunday revival was a great success with scores of residents and visitors enjoying a range of beautiful displays around the old wells.”

The guided walk will gather at the Pin Fold at the top of Chapel Lane at 11am on Sunday, May 6, and walkers will visit all the decorated wells before finishing at Midgley’s Community Room for a cooked breakfast, including local delicacy Dock Pudding – available for a small charge.

“Everyone is welcome to join the procession, but please note the walk will cover uneven, hilly terrain with stiles over about 1.5 miles, so good footwear is a must,” added Mr Benson.