Friday, 12 April 2013

HUNGERFORD ARCADE AND THE HUNGERFORD TUTTI DAY


TUTTI DAY


Tutti Day used to be held throughout Great Britain, but today, Hungerford is the only place in the country which carries on this tradition!

Little has changed in the organisation of the market town of Hungerford for almost 400 years  and Tutti Day, which is the most important day in the Hungerford calendar. is held on the second Sunday after Easter which marks the end of the financial and administrative year.  The Bellman, (who is also the Town Crier, Assistant Bailiff, Beadle and Crier for the Hocktide Courts), Julian Tubb, summons the Commoners to the Court while the two Tutti-men visit every house with common rights, which is almost 100.  In the past they would have collected the 'head penny' from each householder.  Nowadays, the most they collect is a kiss from the ladies of the house and a little hospitality to help them on their way! 

Oyez! Oyez! All ye Commoners of the Town and Manor of Hungerford are requested to attend your Court House at 9 o'clock this morning on pain of being fined. God Save The Queen!" 

The whole town really looks forward to Tutti Day.  Flags fly on the buildings, windows, decorated with spring flowers and of course, there is the Tutti Pole, (photograph below)  which is carried by the Tutti-men.  Hungerford Arcade have a wonderful Tutti Day window, which has made a lot of people smile,  thanks to stallholder, Ann Parker! (photograph below).

You will see from the photographs that one of this year's Tutti-men is in fact, a woman!  She is, Fiona Hobson, from the Tutti Pole Tea Shoppe in the High Street.  This is because women can be nominated to be Tutti-men which makes it even more enjoyable as Alex Rogers, manager at Hungerford Arcade discovered when Fiona and her fellow Tutti-man, Jim Smith visited.  Alex gave Tutti-man (Fiona), a kiss and in return, received an orange! (Alex is the one in the middle of the photograph!). 

This year, Paul Lewington is the Orange Ma.  He can be recognised quite easily as he has a tall feather in his top hat and a sack or oranges over his shouider! The Orange Man leads the Tutti-men through the streets, collecting kisses from all the ladies resident in the High Street.  In return, they receive an orange! 

Much enjoyment is had visiting pubs, shops and then the banquet!
Rita
















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