St Albans Mayor joins in with boundary beating ceremony

St Albans Mayor joins in with boundary beating ceremony

St Albans Mayor joins in with boundary beating ceremony

First published in News St Albans & Harpenden Review: Photograph of the Author by , Senior Reporter

A traditional walk around the ancient boundary of St Albans took place on Sunday afternoon.

The Beating Of The Bounds ceremony is a tradition thought to have started in the mid 13th century when the Tonman ditch was used to help define the boundary.

Following a riot by the townspeople against the authority of the Abbot, 24 burgesses walked around the town in 1327 to confirm a clear boundary.

The afternoon walk was led by The Mayor of St Albans, Annie Brewster, who was joined by residents and St Michael’s School pupils along the 4.5 mile route, where they were invited to beat the ‘bounds’ with willow wands at key locations.

The bounds were beaten at four points: The Pudding Stone, Kingsbury Mill, Boundary mark near the ‘Jolly Sailor’ public house, Keyfield Car Park, Old London Road and the River Ver, the bridge next to ‘Ye Olde Fighting Cocks’ public house, Verulamium Park.

At each point, a short prayer was said by the Mayor's Chaplain, Reverend Richard Banham after which the boundary will be beaten.

Deputy Mayor, Brian Gibbard, Mace Bearer, John Hills and tour guide, Stephen Potter, who took on the role of Town Crier.

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