Sunday, 1 July 2012


Drum roll...fanfare...and 'Ta-Daa!', the 2012 Hebden Bridge Handmade Parade finally had its day. There was all the usual chaos, craziness and last-minute creating as a host of magical woodland creatures gathered together excitedly, waiting to be let loose upon the ordinary townsfolk of this 'quiet' Pennine town. Crowds a-plenty turned out, smiling encouragement all along our route, waving and cheering, cameras clicking. Oh it felt good, after the week of soggy troubles Hebden has had, to be all together, paraders and spectators enjoying a moment of sunny reprieve.  

Wearing a big backpack of sparkly black and white branches and skeletal seed head shapes I was deep in the winter, surrounded by the striking and spookily beautiful. We had owls, an enormous wild boar and a pack of howling wolves on scooters, followed by a crowd of voodoo folk and skeletons. This young wolf was on foot and held tightly to my hand throughout.

I pointed my camera upwards and caught some blue sky, fluffy clouds and odd bits of my costume...

As always, the talent and enthusiam on display was amazing. In the workshops you catch glimpses of the bigger pieces but it's only when they're out there in the world that you can fully appreciate their maker's magic. There is so much to wonder at and admire...I had a moment of wishing I could be in the watching crowds, seeing the carnival of colour pass by, catching every detail of every costume, each one lovingly conceived of and created by the wearer.

My little woodland warrior was very much in the spirit of the occasion, marching and dancing and acting his part with real commitment, loving every second.

Of course the rain had to fall eventually but not until after most of the after-parade acts had performed and we'd all patted ourselves on the back for a job well done. It would have been great to have spent the afternoon in the park sitting in the sun with our friends and neighbours but in the end, we can't complain - nobody rained on our parade.   

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