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Merry England and London May Queen Festival

Visitors from many parts of the world are among the thousands of people who gather on the Common at Hayes, near Bromley, Kent, to witness the Crowning of London's May Queen. It is the largest May Queen Festival in Britain and over a thousand children take part. The date is the second Saturday in May. The procession forms up in the village about 1-30 p. m. and makes its way to the Common* by way of the village church. The actual crowning takes place about 3 p. m. As many as forty May Queens from different parts of the country are present, and with their attendants present a colourful spectacle. Their dresses are beautifully made, with a distinctive colour scheme for almost all the different "Realms". The Festival has been held since 1880.

* (the Common - so called because previously it was common land, i. e. land which could be used by all villagers.)

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