Hornfair - Sunday June 5th 2022

Hornfair

This years Hornfair is timed to coincide with the Platinum Jubilee Weekend, celebrating the  Queen's 70th year as monarch. 

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So on Sunday June 5th, not only will the Village be celebrating the Queens Platinum Jubilee with bunting flying, but also the 750th anniversary of the Hockham Hornfair, granted in 1272 by Henry llI.

 

The event will take over the village centre and will start at 12 noon. There will be lots going on and the locals will be celebrating the event in many ways. It’s an intimate local event, with an emphasis on celebrating. Everything works to Hockham time…….which is very flexible, but a provisional timetable of events is below!

  • 12:00 - Hornfair starts

  • 12:30 - Unveiling of refurbished village sign by the Walmington-on-Sea Platoon

  • 12:45 - Molly Dancing by the Hockham Clodhoppers

  • 13:15 - Maypole Dancing by Hockham Primary School

  • 13:30 - Stick Balancing Competition

  • 14:15 - G & T Wood Chopping Challenge

  • 14:45 - Cutting and sharing of the Hornfair 750th Anniversary Cake

  • 15:00 - Maypole Dancing by Hockham Primary School

  • 15:30 - Molly Dancing by the Hockham Clodhoppers

  • 15:45 - Hobby Horse Challenge Grand Finals

  • + Dad's Army platoon may march at some point during the afternoon if they feel like it!

Stalls should include, games for the yougsters orgainsed by the 'Friends of the School', exhibits of Artwork, Pottery, Hand-Made Crafts, Hand-Made Cards and Art, plus stalls selling Locally Sourced Venison, Garden Metal Ware, Doris’s Pies, Plants, Tombola, Vintage and Collectables, Jams and Preserves, plus lots more! It’s not to be missed!

The Hobby Horse challenge will run through the afternoon, plus we are promised an appearance by our local alpacas, together with the launch of 'Hockham 750', a locally sourced beer!

Coffee, Tea, Cakes, etc. will be available from the 'Coffee Cake & Chat' Ladies on the Village Green and Burgers & Hot Dogs will be served up from the BBQ outside The Eagle.

Don't Panic but this year Dad's Army are coming to the Hornfair!  They are bringing Jones Butchers Van as well!!!

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Dad’s Army platoon and the original Jones Butchers Van at Weybourne

(courtesy of the Thetford Dad’s Army Museum)

History of the Hornfair

In 1272 King Henry III granted Hockham an annual fair and a weekly market, which took place where the village green is today.  The fair which became known as the Hornfair lasted 4 days from the feast and morrow of the Nativity of St Mary and the two days following. In the past this was the 8th -11th September, but in more recent times the Hornfair has been moved to May/June. It’s likely the fair was older, but in 1272 it became both official and more imprtantly for the crown taxable!

The Hornfair likely sold goods made from cow horn, like knife handles, drinking vessels and even shades for lamps and there are two more Hornfairs known of in the UK.

The Horned man was a feature of the Hockham Hornfair (he sports a yellow and green tunic on the village sign, (clearly an early Norwich City fan) and it was customary for him to require a stranger to undergo the dosh, where the hairy pad between the Horns was butted by said stranger.  It’s likely a forfeit was requested for anyone refusing.

In the early 1900’s the fair faded out but was resurrected in 2000 and celebrates its 750th anniversary of being granted in 2022.  The Horns will be out and on show, for their annual display.

Welcome to Great Hockham, a picturesque village situated in the heart of Norfolk's countryside