As the Blessing & Reclaiming of the Waters this year is cancelled along due to the Covid pandemic, Brightlingsea Vicar & Cinque Port Liberty chaplain Rev Caroline Beckett is urging the town to get behind a virtual event instead.
She says: "I am very reluctant to surrender our hard-won traditions to this blasted virus, but equally do not want to put anyone in danger of catching it, so here's some ideas for Blessing of the Waters, since we can't gather this year."
- Get anyone wanting to be involved in a bit of fun to give their house a 'boat name' just for the day and maybe hang out their flags again to mimic the boats 'dressed' for the blessing day. (If people were to submit their addresses, I could do a 'drive-by' sprinkling via water pistol....)
- People can put model boats, pictures of boats or boat paraphernalia in their windows on the day
- At 1.00pm on Sunday June 7th, they can all stand at their highest window and make the din so it will echo out over the water.
- I can bless and sprinkle the boats where they are laid up at an unspecified time with appropriate words.
- If it can be done in a socially distanced way, I could go out on one boat to drop the cross overboard, or I could just wait for the turn of the tide and hurl it in from Bateman's Tower.
- Those with boats could post photos of them online on the day.
For a video explanation of the Blessing & Reclaiming of the Waters by Roger Tabor, click here.