For some inexplicable reason, instead of spending Boxing day morning happily sleeping off the gastric over-indulgences of the day (and night) before, I found myself 130 miles from home, filming obscure yuletide customs in the suburbs of Sheffield. Sword dancing and local folk carols – which we expected to see – and then THIS… which we didn’t.
“The Derby Tup” is a (short) mumming play set to a traditional folk song of the same name. To be honest, it doesn’t have much of a plot… but the play dates back to the late 1800s, and was apparently performed by local children near Christmas (seems like a lot more fun than going door to door Carol singing!). Nowadays, it’s not a particularly common thing to see (most mummers perform the familiar St George material), so I’m really glad we chanced upon it — I love seeing mad things like this perpetuated 🙂