Dancers celebrate as dawn breaks in Derbyshire on May Day.

Derbyshire dancers greet the dawn on May Day

An ancient ritual to mark the birth of a new summer has been staged in heart of Derbyshire's Peak District

May Day celebrations have been carried out in England for over 2,000 years. The Romans celebrated the festival of Flora, goddess of fruit and flowers, in May, which marked the beginning of summer. Many of the old customs celebrating new life and fertility survive to this day, including Morris dancing and dancing around the Maypole.

Dancers were up early to greet the dawn in traditional costume
Dancers were up early to greet the dawn in traditional costume
Rod Kirkpatrick
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The mayday event, like maypole dancing, is linked to fertility and the birth of a new summer
The mayday event, like maypole dancing, is linked to fertility and the birth of a new summer
Rod Kirkpatrick
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The photos were captured by Rod Kirkpatrick of F Stop Press Ltd
The photos were captured by Rod Kirkpatrick of F Stop Press Ltd
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