In the early days a wake was an all-night vigil to commemorate the dedication of village church booths set up in the churchyard providing refreshment for the crowds of hungry pilgrims.
Still later, it became a fair where everyone ate and drank, and participated in sports and trading, singing and folk dancing. Today Winster’s annual week-long festival held in summer is packed with fun activities for all ages.
It begins with the crowning ceremony of Carnival Queen 2022, Jessica Webster, and her attendants Esme Breadmore, Charlotte Slater and Connor McClay, passing the crown to 2023 Queen Clemmie Brown and her attendants Daisy Toplis, Runa Mckenzie and Sophie Perry.
Popular events then follow throughout the week, with a treasure hunt, a pet show, rounders, children's sports, pickle ball, pub quizzes, whist drive, cream teas, with entertainment from Winster primary school.
The country show and St John’s Baptist Church showcase the many talents of the local people in crafts, baking and local artists.
For toddlers there’s a teddy bears picnic on Thursday. Friday sees the plastic ducks, which take flight and escape hiding around the village for children of all ages to find.
On Monday and Thursday evening the village will see a hive of activity for the mighty East Beast cycle climb and Thursday’s very popular Hill Race,
On Wednesday night folk duo Careen will perform in the Burton Institute. Tickets are available at Winster post office or Bowling Green.
On Friday 30th June at 8pm, grab your cowboy hat and boots, and bring family and friends, for a fun ‘boot scootin’ night of line dancing with instructor Mel, from Ultimate Entertainments, going through some fun routines, with a bar and BBQ down in the marquee on the school field.
Wakes Week comes to an end on Carnival Day, Saturday 1st July. This is a traditional event on Winster’s historic Main Street, which is closed for the occasion. Here you will find stalls of many sorts, children’s games, food and drink, beer at the Market House, Bubble Man Show by Adam Byard of Aurora’s Carnival.
Winster’s own Morris Men and Sheffield’s Lizzy Dripping will perform through the day around Winster. The fancy dress judging will start at 1.30pm with a procession led by Ashbourne Town Band. To finish off the week, in the evening down at the marquee, a BBQ and bar with entertainment from Connector will be on the school field from 8pm.
If you would like a stall, contact Irene Webster 07500 371 658 or Kerry Mcclay 07760 161 785
For full details see www.winster.org. facebook@winster wakes page.
Winster Wakes programme available from winster shop