Tales of Britain

By Jem Roberts

The finest, funniest stories of England, Scotland & Wales, refreshed for the 21st century. By Brother Bernard, as told to Jem Roberts.

Thursday, 19 September 2019

Ushering In Autumn In Canterbury

The last Folklore Thursday of the summer, my dear folksters – hope it's a joyous one for all of you!

The Autumn Equinox, Mabon, Harvest Festival, no matter what you like to call it, it's the perfect time, as the nights draw in, to gather around a fire and swap stories. And this Saturday at 4pm, we'll be doing just that at Canterbury's ancient Unicorn Inn at 4pm! This is the furthest east we have ever performed our tales, so we dearly hope to see a few of you there – it's completely free, but Brother Bernard will be signing books! Grab a drink and settle in for an hour of stories from all over the Isles – we may even be able to do a request or two, if the crowd's up for it!

We will naturally be sure to feature actual Canterbury-based stories, even if our best one is technically a Yule tale, but the best feeling is sharing a folktale in the actual place where the story happened! Our other main Canterbury tale is, of course... just that! Our carefully distilled summary of Chaucer's epic anthology of storytelling actually never gets near the city itself, just as Chaucer's pilgrims travelled hopefully without ever actually arriving. 

Admittedly, Chaucer's pilgrims are travelling at the other end of the year – sweet soggy April springtime – but their yarns cover so much of human experience, harvest plays its part without the need to bring in Piers Plowman to stretch to today's theme.

And the following Friday we're further north, at Thorney, a village near Peterborough, and by then it really will be autumn! This is the last date we have booked in this year, besides hopes to return for our traditional Yule Tales of Britain show in Bath, but we still owe a show to our Cheltenham pledger, and if you fancy a story session in your hometown any time at all, just get in touch jem@jemroberts.com and we'll see what we can do! This week my 6th book launches, @FABFOOLS, and that definitely requires a Liverpool trip, so perhaps any scouse folktale lovers could suggest a suitable venue for then...?

Have a warm and optimistic Mabon! We all need one...

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