- October 1st 2013
Harvest Festival marks the end of the main harvest season, we take a look at how it's traditionally celebrated.
Harvest festivals in the UK take place around the last week of September to mark the end of the main harvest season. Traditionally it is a time to give thanks for the crops that have been grown on the land and also to celebrate the end of the hard work involved in growing, tending and bringing in the crops.
Celebrating a good harvest in Britain can be traced back to Pagan times and Harvest festivals are usually held on the Sunday closest to the Harvest Moon (the full moon that occurs closest to the Autumn Equinox).
Although this celebration hasn’t developed in to such a commercial event like Halloween or Guy Fawkes night, it still remains important in many rural towns and villages where farming is the main occupation. Families and friends still come together to celebrate by sharing and tasting the food from the land.
There is also the ever popular food festivals / events which provide a great way of celebrating Harvest, with local growers, producers and artisans displaying and selling their produce.
The traditional name for Harvest Festival was ‘Lammas’ (loaf mass). Loaves of bread were made from the new wheat crop which were then handed out to the local church who in turn distributed them to it’s parishioners.