A kiss for the church

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Hocktide - the second Monday and Tuesday after Easter - was an obscure festival which might be worth reviving.

It was held in Sussex villages apparently to commemorate the defeat of the Danes in King Etheldred’s time.

It was said that the Sussex women celebrated with street ‘gaderynges’ in which they captured men with ropes and forced them to contribute to church 

The men retaliated by demanding kisses.

Such sexual mock conflicts were a typical Hocktide activity.