A Brief History Of Leyland Festival
The Leyland Festival started in 1889, it was first intended to be a fete for children and organised by Sunday School teachers from the parish church in the town.
Each year the festival has been organised to be held on the last Thursday and Saturday in May and each year featured a designated May Queen, Tom Thumb, Leyland Morris Dancers and The Four Seasons were acted out on floats that formed a procession through the town.
The festival procession route from 1889 -1936 started at a school in Union Street which is now known as Fox Lane, travelled through to Towngate, Hough Lane, Chapel Brow and along to the railway station and returned via the same route.
In later years the route from 1951-1968 started at St Andrews Green and travelled down to Balcarrers Road, Turpin Green Lane, Hough Lane, Towngate and then on to Worden Park.
During 1966 Jim Hunt joined as the president of the festival committee and went on to spend 30 years promoting the festival.
In the year of 1969 the festival committee decided to change the date of the event to be held on the first Saturday of June, they then changed the route of the festival which passed though Stanifield Lane, Preston Road, Chapel Brow and onto Hough Lane towards Worden Park.
Leyland Festival promoted the event by selling programmes door to door in the town and the programmes were also available to purchase at an array of shops in the centre of Leyland.
In the day running up to the festival, local volunteers gave their time to help set up the festival in the park and held a balloon flypast as a symbol that the festival was coming.
To read more about the history of the Leyland Festival visit the Leyland Historical Society
Images courtesy of https://www.leylandhistoricalsociety.co.uk/festival-history.html