Local children took part in the unique custom of scrambling for hot pennies at the Rye Mayor Making ceremony on Bank Holiday Monday.
The tradition, unknown outside Rye, sees the newly appointed Mayor throw hot pennies from an upper window of the Town Hall to children who wait for them in the street below.
The sun shone down on as Councillor Michael Boyd was elected the Mayor of Rye for 2018 –2019.
The outgoing Mayor, Cllr Jonathan Breeds thanked his colleagues and staff for their support during his term of office.
He advised that, with staff approval, instead of giving members of staff gifts, he would be transferring the balance of his Mayoral Allowance to the Council’s Grants Fund.
The Mayor called for nominations for the Office of Deputy Mayor for the year 2018-19.
There being no other nominations Cllr Rebekah Gilbert was declared elected as Deputy Mayor.
A service was then held by Canon David Frost at St Mary’s Church, followed by the ancient tradition of the ‘throwing of the hot pennies’.
Local people gathered outside and visiting tourists were enthralled by the tradition and ceremony that was taking place in front of them. Lots of ‘selfies’ were taken and shared.
No-one seems certain of the origins of the custom but there is a theory a that it originates from the time when Rye had its own mint and new coins were minted so fast they were still hot to touch.
The guests were then escorted to the Mermaid Inn for lunch in the Tudor Room. The distinguished guests were: Deputy Lieutenant of East Sussex, The Marquess of Abergavenny; Christopher Nevill; The High Sheriff of East Sussex, Major-General John Moore-Bick; The Chairman of Rother District Council, Cllr Mary Barnes; Chairman of East Sussex County Council, Cllr Michael Ensor; The Speaker of the Cinque Ports and Right Worshipful the Mayor of Sandwich, Cllr Paul Graeme; The Right Worshipful the Deputy Mayor of Hastings, Cllr Nigel Sinden; The Right Worshipful the Mayor of Winchelsea, Jurat John Rodley; The Worshipful Mayor of Lydd, Cllr Bob Jones; Rother District Councillor for Rye, Lord David Ampthill and Rye county councillor Keith Glazier.
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