The little town of Baldock has been organising fairs in its main street for over 800 years, so they know how to do it properly. Of course things change a bit over the years, though some of the people there would not have looked out of place several centuries ago.
The members of Medieval Combat Society were crashing into each other with reckless intensity. Others were of a more peaceable disposition....
There were many stalls representing community groups or selling local produce. The stall selling bread looked really tempting....
Or maybe you'd prefer to catch a duck (?)….
The medieval knights were not the only ones involved in violent confrontation.....
Yes, Mr Punch is still bashing all-comers about the head with little regard for political correctness.
Running alongside the Historic Street Fair and bringing a lot of colour to the scene was a Day of Dance, organised by Baldock Midnight Morris Dancers.
The Midnight Morris was originally formed to dance at events in Baldock when the organisers had been unable to book a side from elsewhere. Now many local dancers come to dance in Baldock at this event.
Above are "Riseley Roughshod" from Bedfordshire who dance in the northern clog morris tradition. They step to the rhythm of the tunes using special "clogs" decorated with bells.
The strange people dressed in green and purple are Wicket Brood Border Morris. I'd often wondered about the significance of the name Wicket Brood, but the explanation is simple - they come from the village of Brickett Wood, nothing like a good Spoonerism!
There were rapper sword dancers doing their complicated routine too.....
….and even Appalachian dancers appropriately called "Tappalachian", also from the local area. Who knew that the Appalachians stretched as far as Hertfordshire?
But perhaps the most colourful and exotic of all the dancers present were the Morena Dance Company who performed their dances from Slovakia. According to their website they are officially called Folklórny súbor Morena Londýn.
Two of their number also played and sang a song. Of course I couldn't understand a word of it but they gave such an expressive performance that I was rivetted throughout.
And they danced wonderfully!