HUNDREDS of characters from this year’s May Day procession handed back their festive costumes last week – but they did not go home empty-handed.

To celebrate the 150th anniversary of the festival, specially-commissioned commemorative mugs and badges were ordered for each character of the parade.

Around 740 were ordered and the mementos were presented to the children when they returned their costumes at Egerton Sports Centre on Friday May 9.

May Day Committee member Eileen Podmore said: “As a committee member it was wonderful that we were in a position to be able to give something special to each child this year, which they could keep and show to their children and say, ‘I was part of this’.

“Although the committee funded the badges, it was through the generosity of a local sponsor, who wished to remain anonymous, that we are able to present each child with a china mug. We are very grateful indeed for this support from our local community.”

Commemorative items have been a long-standing tradition of Knutsford’s Royal May Day and mother and daughter duo Jane and Katie Falder, who are both members of the May Day Committee, were tasked with creating the design for the special items.

Katie, of Hillside Road, said: “We considered the use of red and blue was important – symbolising the ribbons on the Maypole and the bunting always hung up at May Day throughout Knutsford.

“A crown symbol was determined to be the most representative of May Day – particularly in this 150th year – our crowning glory.”

Although the mementos were reserved for children who were characters in the parade, there is a window of opportunity to get your hands on one.

“We ordered additional mugs, paid for by the committee ourselves, for sale to the general public,” said Eileen. “Just in case some families had more than one child, who was not in the festival, and they wished to buy additional mugs.”

The mugs cost £6 and can be purchased from Eileen, email her at