Although accepted by so many of us as only a holiday, Whitsun is also one of the most significant dates in the Christian calendar. It signifies the coming of the Holy Spirit to the disciples of Jesus and essentially the birthday of Christianity. From the Greek word Pentekostos, meaning fifty, it is celebrated fifty days after the final Sabbath of Passover, and therefore like Easter, is a moveable feast celebrated with a bank holiday the following Monday.
Until 1971 it was known as Whit Monday, but now as Spring Bank Holiday. It is associated with baptisms and the wearing of white and more secular events like Whit walks, fetes, fairs, pageants, Morris Dancing and of course Cheese rolling!
Years ago in Tenby Whitsun marked the start of the summer season, it seems such a far cry from the pattern of holiday making that we have here today with our busy long and short weekends, day and long term visitors, coach parties, train excursionists, families, groups, couples and solo visitors that come and go all year round. How lucky we are to live in such a lovely place that thrives and changes but stays essentially much the same.
Here’s to the start of summer and I hope we all have a fabulous one again.