This year it’s Jersey’s turn to host La Fête Nouormande, the annual Norman language festival, which circulates between us, Guernsey and the Normandy mainland. As a result, visitors will be taking part in a variety of events with a language focus.
The week kicks off on Monday 12th June at 6p.m. in Parade Gardens with a selection of traditional Norman games. Everyone is welcome to come to try out Palet Cible, Tchilles and Doque – and the rules will be explained on arrival!
On Tuesday 13th June we have our regular Tuesday “Jèrriais at the pub” session at the Adelphi in The Parade at 5.30.
There’s another pub visit on Wednesday evening 14th June at 7.30 – this time at The Post Horn. This will include a Jèrriais panel game based on several popular TV games. Come along and have fun with our language – you don’t even need to speak it to participate! You’ll have to buy your own drink though!
Thursday morning brings a Costa coffee session in Bath Street at 10:30 where regulars will be joined by learners for conversation and coffee – and hope to see lots of new faces!
Later on Thursday afternoon you can learn more about the town centre in Jèrriais when Geraint Jennings leads a walking tour. It begins at 5:30 by the Jubilee Cross at Charing Cross, opposite the famous Crapaud!
On Friday, the majority of our visitors from Guernsey and Normandy will arrive, but before they do so, there’s bachîn ringing at the junction of Don Street and King Street at mid-day. If you’ve never seen this ancient tradition, come along! You may even be able to have a try yourself, and help to rid the town of evil spirits (as was done many centuries ago!)
On Friday evening, the traditional sun-bonnets and bowler hats of Jersey, Guernsey’s top hats and parasols and Norman coêffes and blouses will be on display at the Queen’s birthday celebrations at Government House from 6:30.
Saturday 17th June begins with the programme of poetry, prose, music and dance in the Town Hall from 9:30 till 11:30 and everyone is welcome to watch or join in. At 11:45 there will be a “cat-walk” of traditional costumes, followed by a colourful parade through town with flags, music and dancing, starting at the Town Hall and finishing up in the Central Market.
The music continues on Saturday evening with a concert – we’ll have songs to get the feet tapping from Badlabecques. It takes place at the Town Hall starting at 8:00.
Sunday 18th June is the final full day. It begins with a town centre guided historical and cultural tour from the Town Hall beginning at 10:00, and there’s a service in Jèrriais in the General Hospital Chapel
at 11:00. After lunch there’s an informal programme of song and dance, more prose and poetry in the Old Magistrate’s Court behind the Town Hall, beginning at 3p.m. and concluding at around 4:30, when we hand on the baton for the next Fête Nouormande to our cousins in Guernsey!