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From May through August each year Well Dressing Festivals are held throughout the small towns and villages of Derbyshire. The people of each village come together to 'dress' their wells with beautifully constructed pictures made of colourful flower petals and leaves. Sometimes the honour of dressing a particular well falls to one family and that privilege is handed down from one generation to another. The themes can be varied. Many designs are taken from biblical scenes or quotations. In 2012 there are frequent references to the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and the London Olympics. A display of 'The Owl and the Pussycat' in Cressbrook celebrates the 200th anniversary of the birth of Edward Lear.
Starting with a Blessing of the Wells, the decorations are usually maintained for one week and visitors are invited to view and admire the handiwork. Some of the villages can be difficult to access with steep hills and narrow lanes but the effort is definitely worthwhile. Own transport is a must if you are well hunting.