Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Shrove Tuesday

It's pancake day again! Not that I had any as I was down at meeting place. This means that lent starts tomorrow. As last year, Maggi Dawn has some interesting thoughts here, here and here. I'm not sure if I'll repeat last years attempt to blog through lent. I might do. I could do with getting back in the habit. I guess it depends if it will be a help or a hinder to making space for God and renewing my dependence on Him, which is what lent is supposed to be about. I am going to be giving up alcohol for lent, inspired by the Thirst for Life campaign. I may also have to give up eBay, one of my latest addictions. Coventry Vineyard have started a 40 days blog for people to blog their lent stories.

Today I was sweeping in Tamworth with my fellow sweep David, and on the way back to Coventry we decided to call in on Atherstone to see if we could catch any of their ball game shenanigans. The Atherstone Ball Game is one of our countries oldest Shrove Tuesday traditions, going back at least 800 years. When we got there the police were just cordoning off the streets and shopkeepers were boarding up their windows. Schoolchildren were beginning to gather outside Barclays bank where they are apparently showered with sweets. We couldn't hang around to see the townsmen engaging in the ancient 'sport', a very primitive, alcohol fuelled version of football/rugby where the only rules are no biting, no hair pulling and 'get and keep the ball'. Shame.


Anonymous said...

Some video of this years Athersotne Ball Game can be viewed here http://www.atherstonenews.com/atherstone-ball-game-in-video.html

Your right about the tone of the game late on but early on everyone gets to have ago kicking the ball. (I'm from Atherstone)ThE locals enjoy it and its fun to watch :)

Jon said...

Thanks for the video.

I would genuinely have liked to catch some of the action. Maybe next year.

I grew up in Nuneaton, just up the road.