Celebration of shortest day is long on fun at Newbridge solstice festival

THE Central West’s pagans were out in force on the weekend, celebrating one of the most important days on their calendar.

The winter solstice – also known as midwinter – is an astronomical phenomenon marking the day with the shortest period of daylight for the year.

While this year that was Thursday, it didn’t stop hundreds of people descending on Newbridge, a small village to Blayney’s south, on Saturday for the Winter Solstice Festival.

Plenty of traditional activities and rituals were observed, including a performance by a troupe of Morris dancers, as well as the burning of a wicker man as the (short) day turned into (a long) night.