Winchelsea keep Sussex tradition alive

Winchelsea Mummers
Winchelsea Mummers

A GROUP from Winchelsea have revived a local Sussex mummers play.

Their first performance took place on Monday - which was Twelfth Night - in front of a small but appreciative audience at the New Inn, Winchelsea.

Richard Comotto said: “It is probably the first time this has been done in Winchelsea for 200 years.”

Mummers Plays are costumed performances about death and rebirth were performed across the country over the Christmas season until the 20th century by farm workers seeking beer money during the winter, while they were laid off work.

They blacked up or wore masks to disguise themselves from their employers. In Sussex, Mummers were known as Tipteers. The Winchelsea play was based on a version from Peasmarsh, but with adaptations. So, in addition to St George, the Turkish Knight, the Queen of Egypt, Tom Fool and the doctor, there was the mayor of Winkelsea.

A total £60 was collected for Help for Heroes and the RNLI.