A modern rushbearing festival was staged in 1977 to mark the Queen’s silver jubilee, and has continued ever since at Sowerby Bridge, near Halifax, where yesterday a traditional rush cart was used at the funeral of Fred Knights, one of the men who pioneered the revival.
A procession through the town took his coffin to Park Wood Crematorium, at Elland.
Mr Knights, along with Garry Stringfellow, had discovered that there had been a rush cart in the town in 1906, as part of a community celebration.
Mr Knights, who was originally from Portsmouth and lived at Sowerby Bridge with his wife, Rita, had found a cart in nearby Heptonstall and corralled locals to pull it. He remained involved when it became a regular event, and became honorary president of Sowerby Bridge Rushbearing Festival.
“Without Fred, there wouldn’t be a rushbearing in Sowerby Bridge,” said Mr Stringfellow.