On the first Monday after Twelfth
Night - Plough Monday - the plough
was prepared for the new season,
dressed in gaudy ribbons and taken in
procession around the villages. In
South West Leicestershire the men
pulling the plough, who "raddled"
their faces, were known as Plough
Bullocks and were aided and abetted
by dancers who danced dances
peculiar to the Eastern Counties. The
Plough Bullocks and the Molly
Dancers were last seen in this area at
the turn of the century in Sapcote.|
Traditionally, the Plough Bullockers
would stop at public houses, farms
and large houses, dance and/or sing
and demand recognition in the form of
cash donations or drink. If neither was
forthcoming the offending landlord's
drive was ploughed up - not
something we try in these enlightened
We hope that you will enjoy watching
... FOR REMEMBER!.....
The Old Custom of Plough Monday still prevails,
Like a great many old popular tales,
Plough Bullocks dressed in ribbon, a
gaudy show, in a long procession shouting as they
"HIGHAM ON THE HILL,
STOKE IN THE VALE,
WYKEN FOR BUTTERMILK,
HINCKLEY FOR ALE!"
Richard Fowlkes, Elmesthorpe 1811.