Picture gallery: Morris met Maori... and did the Haka

The Hangi Hog event in Radwinter was a big success, despite the wet weather. The Hangi Hog event in Radwinter was a big success, despite the wet weather.

Thursday, June 5, 2014
9:35 AM

A cultural first brightened up the Bank Holiday Monday in Radwinter.

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Spectators were entertained as the Maori and Polynesian dancers performed alongside the Green Dragon Morris during a day of intermittent rain. As well as an array of stellar performances, there was a Haka workshop that had everyone on their feet moving, shouting and sticking their tongues out as instructed.

The entertaining day was completed with music from Hollie Haines, Jayson Norris and the King Driscolls. All local musicians who had given up their time to support the event.

The 250-strong crowd watched (from under their umbrellas) as the Hangi was swiftly lifted and dished up after being steamed in the ground for five hours. The result must have been good as by the time the queue, to sample the smoked food, died down there was very little left over.

Stephen Hargreaves, event co-ordinator, said: “Everything went to plan and we had a really successful day raising about £2,500 for our fund. Several people have commented on what a great community’ atmosphere there was at the event.

“It was an exhausting day, but we had a great band of volunteers and performers and already the end-of-day la of ‘Never Again!’ has already changed to a ‘Maybe’.”

The event was organised to raise money for the much-needed new pavilion for Radwinter Recreation Ground, for which £250,000 needs to be raised before building can commence.

The current pavilion, an old Nissan hut donated by Carver Barracks many years ago, is no longer fit for use and in any case does not have any of the facilities now required to support the sports that use the Rec.

Julie Haines from the Pavilion Steering Group said: “It was a great day despite the rain.

“With two sights I will not forget: the first was watching the hangi being laid; it was so hot when the red-hot metal was being pulled out of the fire into the Hangi pit that wet t-shirts were draped over heads to avoid losing eyebrows; the second was seeing the Green Dragon Morris performing the Haka – not something I ever expect to see again.”

The next fund raising event will be the village fete on August Bank Holiday Monday, with Medeival jousting closely followed by another one-off opportunity: a medieval banquet in the 700-year-old Radwinter village church of St Mary’s on September 20.

Tickets are limited to 120 so early booking is advised. More details from Julie Haines on 01799 599764.

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