horseman's sunday

Photo credit: St. John's Hyde Park

Photo credit: St. John's Hyde Park

Horseman's Sunday. Westminster. St. John's Church, 18 Hyde Park Crescent, London W2 2QD.

On the penultimate Sunday in September, St. John's church Hyde Park has for fifty years held a blessing of the horses ceremony. It dates from a 1967 protest against the closure of the stables in Hyde Park.

A church service begins at 10am, and is followed at 12 noon by the ceremony of the blessing ofthe horses. The vicar, on horseback, blesses more than 100 horses brought to the event horse-loving members of the congregation (also on horseback). In addition to horses of all shapes and sizes (including Shetland ponies) there are horse-drawn carriages and buggies. 

This is followed by a village-style fete, with music, carriage rides, games, stalls and a raffle. 

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