On This Day.....6th January, The Haxey Hood Game
The Haxey Hood game is one of those traditional/barking mad bits of human behaviour that sets the English apart from all other races. It is said that in the 13th Century Lady Mowbray lost her hood whilst out riding, this was returned to her by a group of thirteen field workers and the lady rewarded them with half an acre of land each so long as they repeated the feat each following year.
Today, a giant scrum, called 'the sway', of several hundred people from the villages of Westwoodside and Haxey will spend several hours (the game has been known to go on long into the night) trying to get a leather 'hood' into one of the four pubs in the villages. The game is quite rough and tumble and cars, walls, hedges and pub doorways have been demolished in the past as the sway rumbles inexorably past.
This bit is the 'smoking of the fool' when the fool gets the game off to its traditional start with the words "Hoose agen hoose, toon agen toon, if a man meets a man knock 'im doon, but doan't 'ot 'im." This translates as: House against house, town against town, if a man meets a man, knock him down but don’t hurt him.
This is some of the 'action' from the game.