Littleborough Rushbearing Festival 2014

Rushbearing Festival

Rushbearing began in the 10th century when Pope Gregory decreed that rushes should be taken to church on its Saints Day to cover the earth floor for warmth. At Grassmere the rushes are still carried in procession, but in Lancashire and parts of Yorkshire the procession became more elaborate with the rushes being conveyed on decorated carts.

The tradition continued in many areas until Victorian times when it was banned for encouraging "drunkenness and lewd behaviour". Littleborough Rushbearing was revived in 1991 by Rochdale Morris. Since 2012, The Thieving Magpies from Marsden have co-ordinated the festival in conjunction with Littleborough Events and Associations Forum.

The Littleborough Rushcart Festival has grown over the years into a full weekend of fun and activities for all the family.

If you would like to hold a stall at the festival, please download and complete this form.  If you are a food vendor, you will be required to complete an additional form for Rochdale Council.  Stalls cost £10 for charities or £25 for traders.

Please note:
Activities and events are subject to change.  Please check back here for updates.

Saturday 19th July 2014

Littleborough Rushbearing Festival

The festival will centre around Hare Hill Park which will have fairground rides, fun activities and attractions for all the family.

Timings will be confirmed shortly.  Please check back here for updates.

Fun in the Park from 11:00 am to 5:00 pmTricks4Treats Dog Display Team

  • Morris Dancing
  • Punch & Judy Show
  • Taiko Drummers
  • Tricks4Treats Dog Display Team
  • Donkey Rides
  • Morton Sports obstacle course
  • Climbing Wall
  • Charity, Craft and Farmers' Market Stalls
  • Fun fair
  • Bouncy Castle
  • Karate Demonstration

Sunday 20th July 2014

Littleborough Rushbearing Festival

Sunday sees the Rushcart procession start at Cricket Club. The procession will then travel along Calderbrook Road before heading down Hare Hill Road to the centre of Littleborough.

The festival will centre around Littleborough Square which will have music, dancing and attractions for all the family. 

Timings will be confirmed shortly. Please check back here for updates.


Rushcart Procession

  • 12:00 pm - The Rushcart leaves the Cricket Club travelling via Calderbrook Road and Hare Hill Road
  • 1:00 pm - Rushcart arrives in Littleborough Square

The Morris Teams will dance along the route.

Dancing in the Square 12:00 pm to 5:00 pmLittleborough Rushbearing Festival


  • Stalls
  • Children's Rides

Littleborough Rushbearing Festival Littleborough Rushbearing Festival

In association with

Rochdale Metropolitan Borough Council  Littleborough Events and Associations Forum