St George is not only patron saint of England, he belongs to other countries too.
On St George’s day in Barcelona, books are given away at train stations and roses are on sale to give to lovers. This 23 April, The Friends will be bringing this tradition to the St George in Southwark Festival by selling second hand books in the churchyard- and giving away a rose too.
St George’s Roman Catholic Cathedral will celebrate with Guided Tours at 11 am and 3pm as well as a Chapter Mass at 12.30pm, after which the relic of St George will be on display.
From midday the food stalls in Borough Market will be selling traditional English specialities as well as staging cookery demonstrations from Catalonia. Konditor & Cook will be selling St George’s day magic cakes. The Lions part will perform The Ballad of St George & the Dragon in the churchyard at 4.30pm.
And don’t miss the performance of the Southwark Mysteries in the cathedral 6.45 for 7.15 -buy your tickets at the Cathedral Shop or online at www.wegottickets.com/f/1435 (also on Saturday) or the New Esperance Morris Dancers around the Market pubs throughout the evening. There is also the opportunity to ‘remember the outcast dead’ at the gates of the Cross Bones Graveyard in Redcross Way at 6.45pm.
On Saturday 24 April 10.30-1.30pm there will be a free Mosaic Workshop at St Hugh’s church, run by Janet & John Mosaics to create your own St George ‘keepsake’; advance booking essential firstname.lastname@example.org
This is followed by a St George Fun Day at St George’s Church, Borough High Street from 2pm. Performances will include the Blackfriars Nightingales, Ethiopian music and dance, the Rockingham Somali group with dancing and the launch of a poetry book on ‘Courage’, and poetry/theatre performance from local youth group SE1 United.
Stalls will include calligraphy and tea tasting from the London South Bank University Confucius Institute, an Ethiopian coffee ceremony, snapdragon planting and dragon making from BOST, an exploration of St George & the Borough with the Largactyl shuffle team from Cooltan Arts.
Throughout the Festival St George’s church will also be hosting a Photographic Exhibition ‘Signs of Ethiopia’ by Richard Szydlo. Ethiopia is the one African country to celebrate St George as its patron saint. On Sunday there will be a Festival Eucharist at 11am, followed by Lunch in partnership with the Blackfriars Settlement Older Persons Club.
Nearest tube – Elephant & Castle underground station (Northern and Bakerloo lines).
Nearest Railway Station – Elephant & Castle
Buses from Elephant and Castle – ask bus driver for Burgess Park. Bus numbers: 12, 171, 148, 176, 68, 484, 42, 40, 45