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The E-Sylum:  Volume 9, Number 2, January 8, 2006, Article 9

THE DRIFFIELD NEW YEAR COIN SCRAMBLE

Last week Dick Johnson shared an article about New Year's
traditions around the world that involve coins.  Jeff
Starck forwarded this article from a Yorkshire newspaper
about the annual "coin scramble" in the East Yorkshire
town of Driffield:

"IT IS as much a sign of the dawning of a new year as
the chimes of Big Ben and the quaffing of champagne.
And yesterday, once again, the annual Driffield coin
scramble attracted a crowd.

For more than 200 years the children of Driffield have
scrambled in the gutter for sweets and treats, in a
ceremony whose origins have been lost in the mists of
time. Yesterday saw the annual coin scramble in the East
Yorkshire town, with dozens of children scuffling and
laughing in the street as they tried to scoop up treats."

"And, with all the fervour of their predecessors, they
chanted the old rhyme:  "Here we are at our toon's end wi'
a shoulder'a mutton and a croon ti spend Are we doon 'arted?
- No! Shall we win? - Yes!"

The festivity was first recorded in the 1700s, and for
decades children up to the age of 12 have run through
Middle Street in the scramble.  Although it is all now
fun and games, shopkeepers added a cruel twist to the
game in years gone by when they heated the coins on metal
shovels before throwing them to the children."

Full Story

  Wayne Homren, Editor

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