Ascension Day 2017
25 May saw Univ celebrate Ascension Day, the festival which marks the end of the season of Easter, in traditional style.
Beginning in glorious summer sunshine at a little after 8am the College Chapel Choir sung from the upper windows of the Main Quad to the delight of assembled staff and students. This was followed at 10am by the ancient tradition of ‘beating of the bounds’ at which parishioners of the University Church of St Mary the Virgin entered Univ to help mark the parish boundaries. The custom is believed to date back to Anglo-Saxon times, and is mentioned in the laws of Alfred the Great (who definitely wasn’t the founder of Univ…)
With more than 50 in attendance, the parishioners and College staff first marked the wall outside of Chapel with a chalk cross before striking it with a cane and calling out ‘Mark, Mark, Mark.’ This was followed by the singing of the hymn Rejoice, the Lord is King! and the giving of three cheers to Univ – something that is usually done in the Master’s Garden, but in deference to the fact that exams are in progress was restricted to Main Quad this year.
As is also traditional, sweets and coins were thrown from the upper windows of the Master’s Lodgings for the children in attendance to collect. Celebrations were concluded with a communion service in the College Chapel at 5.30pm.