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In the mid-19th century three devout Buckley non-conformists, Edward Davies, Joseph Griffiths and Richards Roberts, were involved in the Band of Hope movement encouraging children in Sunday schools to sign the temperance pledge and sing temperance songs.
The Buckley, Flintshire, North Wales, Jubilee officially began in 1857 as a temperance movement meeting, succeeding earlier community gatherings. By the end of the 19th century it featured brass bands leading a procession through the town with each church displaying their own banner.
The Jubilee remains little changed today. For over 160 years it has taken place on the second Tuesday in July. Sunday schools from churches and chapels in the Buckley area come together to take part in a procession through the town led by the Royal Buckley Town Band. This film demonstrates the strength of faith and community spirit which still thrives in Buckley to this day.
The annual procession begins with a short service held on the Higher Common during which the Jubilee hymn, written by Reverend E. Wyn Parry for the centenary in 1956, is sung accompanied by the Royal Buckley Town Band. After the procession ends, the children are treated to tea and games back at their own Sunday school.
This film of the procession taken in Buckley town centre was recorded by David Markey who at the time was manager of a shop in Brunswick Road. Full copyright permission to reproduce the footage here has kindly been granted to the Buckley Society.
The date of this event was Tuesday the 11th July 1989. In addition to the Royal Buckley Town Band, it features a visiting band from Červený Kostelec, a town in the Czech Republic.
As well as capturing images of the various Church members participating, the film also contains glimpses of shop fronts, local characters, fashions from the era and vehicles of yesteryear. The children filmed will now be adults and many adults filmed will now have, sadly, departed.
Because of the Corona Virus outbreak in 2020 and restrictions on public gatherings, it is believed that this year will be the first time in the town’s history that the Jubilee has had to be cancelled. It is fitting therefore to post this vintage footage now, in the hope that it goes some way to raise spirits in these troubled times.
We are very grateful to Mr John Butler for his kind support, skills and assistance in processing this footage and enabling it to be freely available online.
Paul Davies, Secretary The Buckley Society May 2020
Original VHS tape capture: David Markey
Archive Project Direction: Paul Davies p.p. The Buckley Society
Digital restoration/processing 2020: John Butler

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