Hallaton Bottle Kicking

There are virtually no rules to the ancient tradition of bottle-kicking, except that there is no eye-gouging, no strangling, and no use of weapons.In the early afternoon, the hare pie is spread on the ground at a dip at the top of Hare Pie Bank which is possibly the site of an ancient temple.Each bottle is then tossed in the air three times, signaling the start of the competition. Each team tries to move the bottles, on a best-of-three basis, across two streams one mile (1.6 km) apart, by any means possible.

The contest is a rough one, with teams fighting to move the bottles over such obstacles as ditches, hedges, and barbed wire. Broken bones are not unheard-of, and emergency services are generally on standby.

After the game, participants and spectators return to the village. Those players who put in an especially good effort (for example, carrying a barrel across the goal stream or holding on to a barrel for quite some time) are helped up onto the top of the ten-foot-tall Buttercross, and the opened bottle is passed up for them to drink from before being passed around the crowd.

This is an on going personal project. For this years images have a look here