Woodcraft Folk

Cheltenham District
Woodcraft Folk

Levellers Day: Burford - May 12

At this time every year Kingfisher Elfins join other Woodcraft Folk groups from the locality in Burford for a day of fun and games. This year included Woodcraft Folk from Oxford, Banbury, Gloucester and Cheltenham. The purpose is to be a part of the Levellers Day celebrations that are held in Burford at the same time. The day is a commemoration of three soldiers shot by firing squad outside Burford Church by Oliver Cromwell on the 17th May 1649. The soldiers belonged to the Levellers, an early ‘socialist’ political party that shared many of the ideals held by the Woodcraft Folk, democracy, freedom of speech, the need for decent health care and housing etc. The Levellers organised a rebellion within Oliver’s Army and three soldiers, Cornet Thompson, Corporal Church and Private Perkins were considered the leaders and paid the ultimate price. The day includes Woodcraft fun in the recreation park at the top of Burford and the groups joining the parade organised by the Workers Education Association through the town centre in the middle of the day - and for years the Woodcraft Folk have been the loudest and most colourful part of that parade.