Gee Cross Well Dressing, 9th July 2006
Photographs by Gerald England


Although well-dressing is a custom mostly confined to Derbyshire, it can be seen in adjacent counties too. Information about the practice can be found on the Well Dressing website edited by Glyn Williams and described as the definitive information site for Well Dressing in Derbyshire and neighbouring counties.

Well dressing celebrations were held regularly in Gee Cross from the 1820s until 1878. The custom was revived by the local Women's Institute in 2000. Information can be found about this on the Tameside Local History Forum website.

The 2006 event followed the format of previous years. At 2pm the Adamson's Band led a procession from the Grape's Hotel up Joel Lane to Arnold Hill Well and Slateacre Well. At each well a blessing was given and two verses of a hymn were sung. The procession returned down Joel Lane and along Stockport Road to Baron Road Well and the Village Green Well. It was then back to Booth's Well by the Grapes Hotel, and into the grounds of Hyde Chapel where the local secondary school had created a display using coins and stamps rather than traditional natural materials.

There was then a service in Hyde Chapel followed by entertainment and refreshments.


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This page last updated: 10th July 2006.