These celebrations begin on the first Sunday in May, when three cheeses, carried on a litter and decorated with flowers, are brought to the church to be blessed by the vicar. After the service, the cheeses are rolled anti-clockwise three times around the church building. The ceremony is thought to be about 600 years old.
The following Saturday is Wap Day, when Mop Man, Flag Man and the Swordbearer accompany the Mayor to a pool where he is ritually ducked. Afterwards the Wap queen and the Mayor do some more cheese-rolling with the Double Gloucester to mark the opening of the Wap Fair. (Be careful if you're standing at the bottom of the slope, at Well Leaze.) There are stalls, music and other entertainments, and you can also taste some of the rolled cheese - a little bruised perhaps.
The blessing of the cheeses takes place at 10.30 on Sunday 3 May at St John the Baptist Church, Randwick, Gloucestershire. Cheese-rolling is at 11.15am. Wap Day is on Saturday, 9 May.Reuse content