Mauchline Holy Fair Sat 25th May 2013 11am - 5pm
The Mauchline Holy Fair 2013
This is a fantastic day out for all the family with a huge amount of stalls, superb entertainment and atmosphere in the centre of Mauchline. The 2012 Mauchline "Queens Jubilee" Fair was a huge success and and this year we are delighted to announce that we have Donnie Munro formerly of Runrig and his band headlining at this year's Holy Fair.
The 2013 will be Mauchline Burns Club's 12th Annual Holy Fair and over the last eleven years has become a showpiece for local talent in its music and drama. The superb variety of stalls also displays a wide range of localcraft skills. These stalls now number around 80, attracting participants from all around.
It has been estimated that approximately 10,000 to 12,000 visitors are attracted to this remarkable event. This is very much to the profit of the village, not only financially, but also by putting Mauchline to the forefront of the Burns' world, a rightful position many of us have struggled for over the years.
Headlining is former Runrig front man, Donnie Munro & his Band.
Jill Woodburn's Highland Dancers; Sensational Band 'Jive Express'; Muirkirk & District Pipe Band; Dalmellington Junior Brass Band; Aeolian Choir; Scottish Singer, Kirk James; Mauchline Burns Club's, Ian Lyell presents 'The Kilmarnock Edition'; 'Living History' re-enactors present 'The Road to Bannockburn' on the Bleaching Green; Children's Magician 'Gordon's Magic' in the Church Hall; Children's funfair, street magicians and street entertainers, Slideshows of Old Mauchline.
This year over 80 stalls will again cater for all tastes and interests. Most come every year, which results in a huge demand for stalls and it is felt that the stalls make a considerable contribution to the atmosphere, spread as they are through the 18th century lanes.
Click HERE to see the full programme of events for the 2013 Mauchline Holy Fair
For more details visit the official website www.mauchlineburnsclub.com
Let's jump back in time, to 1786.
The Kirk Burns worshipped in in Mauchline was a 17th century building which he described as —'as ugly a lump of consecrated stone as ever cumbered the earth.' The interior was as bleak, with a floor several feet below ground level due to subsidence. It was lit by six small windows supplemented by a few candles. The sermon was expected to last an hour and one passage of scripture was expected to be examined over several weeks. One year, eight verses of one psalm provided material for sermons for the next 19 months.
The Kirkyard was in as bad a state as the Kirk itself. The Session records describe it as- ' a sort of dunghill, a receptacle for all filthiness so that one can scarce walk to Kirk with clean feet. Disorderly people break the windows and break the tombs and deface the engravings .' And it was in this Kirk and in these grounds that the original Holy Fairs were held.
The fair was actually an opportunity for people all round Mauchline to take communion. Some Kirks held communion irregularly, so hordes flocked to Mauchline on the second Sunday in August for the service. The occasion lasted 3 days: Saturday for cleansing and preparation, Sunday for the services, and Monday for reflection. It was also a continuation of the Covenanters open-air conventicles.
In 1788, 1800 people took communion, 400 only being Mauchline folk, but the Kirk could cope with only 200 at a time. So the crowds had to mingle in the Kirkyard for hours as they waited. Two elders stood at the gate opposite Poosie Nansie's with the collection plate. Stalls like Punch and Judy shows, offered pulpits to local preachers. The communicants entered the Kirk in groups of 80 taking 15 or16 sessions to cater for the crowds.
Tents supplied food and drink while various hucksters offered other entertainment, and Racer Jess, Poosie Nansie's daughter, plied her trade at the gate.
For more details on the Mauchline Burns Club Holy Fair Please visit the official website www.mauchlineburnsclub.com