Lilly May Marks Start Of Midsummer St Johns Day
When William McNamara acquired the land on which Bluestone National Park Resort is built, it included the deeds to the remains of a 12th century stone building, Newton North Church.
Within the contract of ownership of the little ruined church, there is an ancient clause which dictates that, if requested to do so, the owner must present the Church of Wales with a white rose to mark St John’s Day (Midsummer’s Day), or Gŵyl Ifan Ganol Haf as it’s known in the Welsh language.
Since Mr McNamara has owned the land the Church of Wales has never asked for the floral token, but just in case they do, three-year-old Lilly May Smith has brought a white rose (and a big smile!) along to the church this Midsummer’s Eve.
“At Bluestone we like to stay in touch with our Celtic roots, so marking Gŵyl Ifan Ganol Haf in this way is a nod to the celebrations that no doubt will have happened at this very church, hundreds of years ago.” says Cherry Stratford, Resort Manager at Bluestone.
Visitors to Bluestone can still see the untouched beauty of Newton North Church, located near the centre of the resort.
St John’s Eve falls on 24 June and, as our ancestors were well aware, St John’s Eve is one of the three spirit nights of the year, known in Wales as y tair ysbrydnos, when spirits roamed abroad in the hours of darkness. The other nights were May Day Eve and Halloween.
There’s nothing wrong with cycle rides and barbecues, but why not use this summer to branch out, reconnect with nature and do something new?
Any visitor to the fields where Bluestone now stands would probably have seen haystacks dotted across the landscape, either finished or in the last stages of construction.