Thursday 23 July 2009

A village to the south-east of London

Toronto: I was reading a book on the plane from London today called Shakespeare's London on Five Groats a Day. It's a rather clever and entertaining attempt to imagine what a contemporary guide book might have been like.

I didn't expect to find an entry for Charlton, but there it was in the 'celebrations' chapter. 'Charlton is a village to thed south-east of London beyond Greenwich.' The villagers are known for their Addicktion to the game of football which is played on the festival day of St. Luke amid much revelry, boisterousness and ribaldry, the game starting in Upper Charlton and finishing towards the Thames. Vile louts from Bermondsey sometimes join in and cause mayhem.

Actually, the only truthful bit is about St.Luke. Seems that King John cuckolled a local miller and in reparation allowed a Charlton Horn Fair on St. Luke's Day each year (October 18th). Apparently people went dressed as kings or queens or as millers with horns on their head. Could be a new fashion at The Valley.

Coming next: How to Run a Football Club on Five Groats a Day

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