Lammastide at Southwark Cathedral

Lammastide postage stamp issued in 1981.

The Lammas Fair in Exeter and the Ould Lammas Fair in Ballycastle have been cancelled due to Coronavirus. But Borough Market and Southwark Cathedral are together maintaining ancient tradition.

The word Lammas is derived from Loaf Mass and refers to bread made from the first harvested wheat for the Mass of Thanksgiving. This is Old Harvest Festival at the start of Harvest.

Lammas would have been observed on 1 August in villages along the Pilgrims’ Way.

This year Southwark is giving thanks on the fifth day of Lammastide: Wednesday 5 August.

The service starts at 12.30pm in Bread Ahead bakery in Borough Market. After the blessing of the bakery, bakers, grain and flour, clergy and Bread Ahead bakers process to the Cathedral with the first loaf, a wheatsheaf and other loaves for the Eucharist at 12.45pm.

There will be limited seating in church due to social distancing but the service is being streamed live on the cathedral website

The order of service and a PDF booklet can be downloaded.

Sub Dean Michael Rawson and Borough Market’s Bread Ahead team with a wheatsheaf and Cathedral loaves
Lammas Day in the Book of Common Prayer

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