Hallaton Bottle-Kicking is a unique kind of pagan Rugby match that takes place
Monday between the neighbouring villages of Medbourne and Hallaton.
Theories abound, but nobody
really knows the exact origins of this annual battle where the young (and not so
young) lads of both villages compete in three rounds, attempting to carry a
small oak cask full of ale across open fields to a goal, in a battle with very few,
if any rules. Of course, it is the job of the opposite side to prevent
them doing so and to try to carry the bottle (cask) into their goal.
The goals are opposing muddy brooks, the fight is furious
and the score is always much discussed by locals for weeks afterwards.
Bottle-kicking is a rare glimpse
of real English rural life. Don't miss it - and be sure to take your camera (and wellies)! More information from the Hallaton website here and Wikipedia here.