Mummers the word as group of players take to the pubs of March for festive tradition

PUBLISHED: 15:01 29 December 2019

The March Mummers photo supplied by Liz Wright

The March Mummers photo supplied by Liz Wright

Archant

The sun appeared briefly to welcome the March Mummers as they toured the town with their short play.

marGeorge&Beelzebub
George fights with Beelzebub photo supplied by Liz WrightmarGeorge&Beelzebub George fights with Beelzebub photo supplied by Liz Wright

The local performers started their day with a visit to the Friends of March Library coffee morning followed by stops at The Acre and Ye Olde Griffin before they ended their day at The Ship where they gave their performance to regulars and followers.

The performers this year, in order of appearance, comprised Mike Thomas (Jim Jack), Keith Cheale (musician), Malcolm Busby (Fool), Rodney Crabb (Beelzebub), Marcus Phillips (King George), Stuart Broad (Doctor) and Steve Cornell (Dame Jane). They were also accompanied by their prompt Maureen James and collector Melanie Phillips along with baby dragons Max and Jago Phillips.

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The afternoon raised £117 for the March Summer Festival.

The March Mummers first performed their short play in town at Christmas 2011. The group were formed by Stuart Broad and Maureen James with the aim of recreating the past, having some fun and raising money for charity.

Mummers' plays were once a common feature in rural areas at Christmas time. The performers, who were often plough boys, entertained audiences in pubs and big houses, as a way of gaining food, money or drink for the festive season.

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