Crowds urged to support the Penny Hedge tradition

Will you be watching the planting of the Penny Hedge?
Will you be watching the planting of the Penny Hedge?

Local people are being urged to turn out to support the planting of the Penny Hedge this Wednesday.

Records indicate the ceremony has taken place since the year 1159, with the story behind the custom concerning three noblemen who were hunting a wild boar, when it was reputed to have sought refuge with a hermit in Eskdaleside.

The three men attacked the hermit and killed him and the building of a hedge cut with a penny knife was undertaken as a punishment.

After the hunted boar apparently managed to escape its pursuers by hiding in a chapel, the noblemen were denied access to the building by a hermit. In a fit of rage they rode him down with spears, mortally wounding him.

On his death bed, the hermit informed those responsible for his wounding that both they and their ancestors were to build a hedge capable of withstanding three tides as penance.

The ceremony will take place at 9am in the upper harbour.