London Drum

Costermongers Harvest Festival in Guildhall Yard

Costermongers Harvest Festival
Where? Guildhall, Gresham Street, The City When? 29th September 2024 From 1.30 PM Parade to St. Mary-le-Bow at 2.30 PM Church service 3 PM to 4 PM Price? Free to watch · See pearlysociety.org Parking: Nearby car parks Buses: 8, 11, 21, 23, 25, 26, 43, 76, 100, 133, 141, 242, 388 Bus fares Trains: The closest station is Bank Central DLR Northern Wat&City Other nearby stations: Cannon Street, Mansion House, Moorgate and St. Paul’s Train fares

The Pearly Kings & Queens Society will be holding their annual Costermongers Harvest Festival in Guildhall Yard.

The Costermongers were the original fruit and vegetable sellers who later became the Pearly Kings & Queens, and you'll be able to see them all dressed up in their iconic costumes of black and white buttons.

The Costermongers Harvest ParadePhoto: flickr.com/photos/68973215@N07

Morris dancers and May Pole dancing

The afternoon's entertainment will feature Morris dancers waving their handkerchiefs above their heads, ringing their knee bells and bashing their batons together.

The May Pole dance in Guildhall YardPhoto: AndyScott/Wikimedia Commons
The May Pole dance in Guildhall Yard

The highlight of the day will be a grand May Pole dance featuring the Pearly Kings and Queens, Chelsea Pensioners, and some of the borough Mayors in their fancy red robes, followed by the Pearlies singing popular Cockney songs like The Lambeth Walk and Knees Up Mother Brown.

Harvest parade to St. Mary-le-Bow

St. Mary-le-Bow church in CheapsidePhoto: Craig Cross
St. Mary-le-Bow church in Cheapside

At 2.30 PM a barrow will be loaded up with harvest goods and paraded a short distance along Cheapside to the Cockney's spiritual home - St. Mary-le-Bow church - for a special service of thanksgiving.

Members of the public are free to attend the service at 3 PM but it quickly fills up and you might not get a seat. If you stand outside then you'll still be able to hear the sound of its famous Bow Bells -- the same ones that are supposed to have turned Dick Whittington back to London.

I also recommend… If you enjoy Guildhall then you might like to visit Mansion House (you can walk it in 4 mins) and Royal Courts of Justice (walk it in 20 mins)

London Squire bookThe owns londondrum.com and has spent the last decade reviewing the capital’s landmarks, attractions and hotels. His guidebook is available from Amazon

Related events

Next month A Night With Janis Joplin

A Night With Janis Joplin – 1960s Queen of Rock’n’Roll

Next month The F1 Exhibition

The Formula 1 Exhibition at London’s ExCel Centre

Next month Tottenham Hotspur Football Match

Watch a Tottenham Premier League home game

Your comments and questions

Be the first to talk about this event

Be the first to comment