Well dressing set to unveil in Tissington

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The Dales’ annual well dressing season is to burst in into season this week with thousands of visitors expected to visit Derbyshire villages to enjoy the ancient tradition.

Vicar of Tissington, the Rev Andy Larkin will take the 11am Blessing of the Wells service and lead his fellow clergy in a procession around the village. Guest preacher this year is the Rev Chris Kennedy from Derby Cathedral.

Derbyshire Dales District Council said the true origins of well dressing are “lost in the mists of time”.

A spokesperson said: “Many sources suggest it developed from a pagan custom of making sacrifice to the gods of wells and springs to ensure a continued supply of fresh water.

“Like many folk traditions, it was later adopted by the Christian Church as a way of giving thanks to God for water.

The tradition took on a special significance in Dersbyshire in the 17th Century as various villages, Tissington in particular, gave thanks for their deliverence from the Plague.