And Did Those Hooves in Ancient Times

An interesting talk coming up at South East London Folklore Society this week - Thursday 10th August 2017 - looking at all kinds of magickal and folkloric aspects of the goat. No less than 'a journey through goatish manifestations by way of Snowdonia, Avebury and Crouch End: Alexander Keiller's Pan worship, daimonic encounters, haunted abandoned ...

Beating the Bounds in Penge and Lee

On this day in 1881, a 'beating the bounds' procession took place in Penge. As reported in The Beckreham journal and Penge and Sydenham Advertiser, Wednesday, June 1, 1881:'The ancient custom of beating the bounds was observed with all due ceremony in Penge on Thursday the 26th being Ascension Day. Some 18 boys from various ...

Lucifer Over Lancashire – the Pendle Witch Trials

This Thursday night (March 9th 2017), South East London Folklore Society will be examining The Pendle Witch Trials of 1612 - some of the best recorded and famous witch trials of the 17th century.SELFS host Nigel Hoyle has a rather fine folk music project, The Cunning Folk, and they have written a song about the Pendle ...

Wicca talk at Old Kings Head SE1,

Tomorrow night (Thursday 14 July) at the always interesting South East London Folklore Society, at the Old Kings Head off Borough High Street SE1, a talk on contemporary Wicca:'The past century has borne witness to a growing interest in the belief systems of ancient Europe, with an array of contemporary Pagan groups claiming to revive ...

May Day 2016: Jack in the Green in Deptford and Greenwich

 Another May Day, another procession through the streets of Deptford and Greenwich with the Fowlers Troop, featuring the Deptford Jack in the Green. As in previous years it all started at the Dog and  Bell pub  in Deptford, before heading eastward down to the Cutty Sark, Greenwich Park and various pubs. Of course the area is changing, ...

Hilly Fields Wassail

Wassailing is an old custom of drinking to the health of  fruit trees to ensure a good harvest, most commonly associated with cider apples producing trees in the West Country. Tomorrow (Sunday 7th February) there's a Hilly Fields Wassail with music and refreshments at the orchard by the park's stone circle. It starts at 4 ...

The Devil of Deptford – a poltergeist tale from 1699

For Halloween here's a spooky story from late 17th century Deptford. 'The Devil of Deptford' is a pamphlet by the clergyman Edward Fowler.  According to the historian Peter Elmer,  the 'haunted' house in question 'almost certainly' belonged to 'Henry Godman (d.1702) who combined preaching with medical practice and had resided at Deptford since at least ...

The Tarot Tour of London

The Wheel of Fortune card from the Rider Waite Tarot Deck - co-designed by A.E.Waite who has an interesting connection with the Horniman MuseumComing up next week (Thursday October 8th) at South East London Folklore Society:'The Tarot Tour of London uses 22 of the major historical sites as the basis of the tour as they ...

Three Feathers & The Old Witch: Two Deptford Fairy Tales

More English Fairy Tales  by Joseph Jacobs (1894) includes a tale called 'Three Feathers' which the author states was 'Collected by Mrs Gomme from some hop-pickers near Deptford' (presumably the folklorist Alice Gomme).'Once upon a time there was a girl who was married to a husband that she never saw. And the way this was, ...

London Urban Legends at Brockley Max

Brockley Max Festival starts tomorrow, lots of  arts and music coming up over next couple of weeks, starting with the usual opening night music event by Brockley station. You can check the programme for full list of events, for now just want to highlight an event next Monday June 1st (8 pm) at the Ladywell ...