Triumph of the Clun Green Man

Tradition and folklore surround the Clun Green Man Festival, which is an annual celebration of the coming of summer.

Triumph of the Clun Green Man

Thousands of people flock to watch the Green Man battle it out with the Frost Queen to ensure that winter is banished.

The dramatic encounter takes place on Clun's medieval packhorse bridge and is the focal point of the two-day festival in May.

The Green Man walks down the hill from the church accompanied by the May Queen, while the Frost Queen approaches from Bridge Street.

Spectators cheer on the Green Man because, if he loses, it is said that summer will not come to the Clun Valley.

Afterwards, the Green Man and the May Queen lead a parade to celebrate victory in the grounds of the castle.

The origins of the Green Man are unclear, but he is meant to represent fertility, nature and the new birth associated with spring.

Sculptures of his mysterious, leafy face can be found in churches, which absorbed many pagan traditions, as well as on buildings, furniture and pub signs.

Clun’s version of the Green Man is said to be unique because, unlike others, his head is adorned with deer antlers.

Published by Shropshire and Beyond on (modified )