January 6th Haxey Hood

Published: Tuesday, 3 January 2017 , contact Patrick on Facebook or Email.

The old and quite frankly bizarre game of Throwing the Hood is played in Haxey in North Lincolnshire every 6th of January. The festivities start in the afternoon when the Fool and his twelve Boggans make their way to the village green.

The Boggans

The Boggans are experts in the game and usually wear red or have some red item about their person. Their leader is known as the King Bogan or Lord of the Hood; he carries a wand made of thirteen withy-bands as a sign of his office. The Fool has perhaps the best job, he has a feathered hat and soot blacked face and is allowed to kiss any lady who takes his fancy.

When they reach the green, the Fool stands on a stone and gives a speech: not an easy task as damp straw is lit behind him making a cloud of smoke. The Fool then leads the throng to a hill and the game begins. The hood is thrown up and something not unlike a rugby scrum develops as each man tries to push, pull or drag the hood to his village. It can take two or more hours before the hood reaches its destination and when it does so it is taken to the winner’s pub and much drinking ensues. 

January 6th Haxey Hood

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