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History Pages


Beating of the Bounds

Ordnance Survey maps now mark (Civil) Parish boundaries. Prior to this, it was traditional for a group of parishioners, led by the vicar, to walk their (Ecclesiastical) Parish boundaries, marking stones and trees. This took place around Rogationtide (the Mon, Tues, and Weds before Ascension Day). This centuries old practice was re-introduced in Gisburn and a series of walks representing "The Beating of the Bounds" was undertaken in three stages :- May 1991 Rogation Sunday (Southern area). 24th May 1992 (North / East area). 16th May 1993 (North / West area).

Beating the bounds

Gisburn Morris Dancers,

Gisburn Morris Dancers performed at local village functions as far back as 1916 (possibly even earlier). Morris Dancers should, strictly speaking, always be male, but because Gisburn was a remote village it managed to get away with female Morris Dancers as well. In 1935 during a May Day procession, Bob Capstick's horse and lorry was used to carry "BRITANNIA" and her retinue through the streets of Gisburn. The 8 strong Gisburn Morris team danced GISBURN PROCESSIONAL MORRIS, which, as the name suggests is one which is danced in a procession. The annual May Day celebrations ceased when the second world war began. GISBURN PROCESSIONAL MORRIS is still well known and danced by Morris Dancers today.

Gisburn Gala and Gala Queen

In 1951 (Festival of Britain Year), fund-raising for the proposed extension of Gisburn village hall began with a week of activities. At Gisburn's Festival, Ann Wilkinson was crowned 'Festival Queen'.

Gisburn held a Carnival in 1952, when Jean Taylor was 'Carnival Queen', Mary Precious was 'Carnival Queen 'the following year.

The annual event, raising funds for the upkeep of the hall, became known as "GISBURN GALA" in 1964. A procession of floats was led by a band from the Auction Mart to the Commercial Hotel (now Traveller's Court) and back to the playing field (Georges Croft) where fancy dress and floats were judged. The last procession through the village was held in 1991. Side-shows, Stalls and Competitions are held at the Gala. Teas, Ice-cream and barbecued sausages (supplied by Gisburn's local butcher) are served, and a barrel organ plays.

The tradition of selecting a queen was revived in 1991. A 'Gala Queen' was selected by a draw from class 4 at Gisburn School. Two attendants were selected from classes 3 and 4. After being crowned and leading the procession around the playing field, The Queen, wearing the original "cloak" (dating back to 1951) and her retinue were invited to attend village functions throughout their "year of office". They were, also invited to the May Queen celebrations at Slaidburn.

Year Queen  Attendants
1991 Helen Nicklin Caroline Wigan. Alison Bargh.
1992 Abigail Game Victoria Speight. Meryl Hughes.
1993 Leah Hodgkinson Felicity Lloyd. Sarah Moorhouse.
1994 Alison Bargh Mili Gupta. Nili Gupta.
1995 Lisa Bailey Sara Calvert. Louise Baron.
1996 Felicity Lloyd Helen Pate. Danielle Piccolo.
1997 Sara Calvert Sarah Lancaster. Emily Asquith.

Maypole Dancing

Gisburn has its own Maypole, purchased in 1992 through donations, fund-raising and grants. An adult team was originally created who performed at Gisburn Gala in 1993. In 1996, junior children from Gisburn school formed a 16 member Maypole team, coached by teacher Mrs Stephanie Dugdale. The children are very enthusiastic and Maypole Dancing has become a popular and enjoyable attraction at Gisburn school  "Fun Day" which is held in June.