LYNEMOUTH CHILDREN'S GALA
ALL the fun of the fair will grip the village on
Saturday 25th August 2018
at the 92nd Lynemouth Children's Gala, which takes place at Lynemouth Welfare Ground from 12 o'clock noon with attractions, displays, games, a fun fair and bouncy castle, as well as the traditional fancy dress.
Members of the Parish Council will help out with the selection of the Gala Queen, and to judge the fancy dress on Gala Day.
The newly crowned Gala Queen will kick off the event before parading around the village on a float with her royal party of attendants. Along with the Queen of the Gala other attendance winners feature on the float.
The Gala is a long standing traditional event in the pit village since 1926, the year of the General Strike, with its roots in the warm hearted generosity of the mining communities where people saved hard from their meager pay to fund a celebration of youth and community spirit every year with a fun family day out.
The first Gala was held in 1926 the year of the Lynemouth Council School opening and at the time of the seven month long miners' strike. When thoughts were centred around families making ends meet the young folk of Lynemouth were still provided with a Gala Day. The early Galas come rain come shine were normally held in late June or early July and traditions included a Gala Queen and her two attendants. They were chosen by the school children and presented with necklaces by the headmaster. What an honour that would have been to be transported to the Welfare Ground and paraded in front of proud parents family and friends. Fancy dress competitions were the order of the day which gave parents the opportunity to become involved in making up costumes for their children. Ashington Coal Company and the National Union of Mineworker (NUM) supported the event in the early years and the Ellington Colliery banner was always a feature and carried proudly by committee members.
The Gala procession headed by Ellington Colliery Band started at the school and wound its way through the village streets escorted by teachers and helpers and joined along the way by villagers. Imagine the excitement as the numbers swelled as the band marched on and played its heart out. For the schoolchildren a day of sport and fun and not to forget a bag of goodies and a silver coin given out to each child by the Gala committee.
Unfortunately, in recent years there has been no band to play on the day and lead the Gala Queen's Float and parade, the biggest part of the event.
[In some places they pronounce Gala as "gay-la", but in the UK we say "gar-la", since the word originally comes to us from Italian and Spanish and they pronounce it as it is done in the UK. It doesn't matter, both pronunciations are acceptable].
Thank you to all who help us keep this proud ethos alive and strong in Lynemouth. Contact: Audrey Turnbull, 36 Ingleby Terrace, Lynemouth, Northumberland NE61 5XS; Telephone: (01670) 861026.