Work on the restoration began in May. The old tree stumps were grubbed up, rubbish cleared and the surrounding banking built up and squared off.

Work in progress May 23rd, 2003

Work in progress May 23rd, 2003

During this process four huge blocks of concrete were dug out. Could they be the remnants of the 1920’s corner posts? At the same time two large rectangular blocks of stone were also removed from the area. 

Years of erosion had created a slope which necessitated bringing in tons of rubble and subsoil to form a level platform on which to lay the topsoil.

Levelling off

Great excitement was caused by the discovery that one of the blocks of stone, measuring approx 3feet long by 2 feet wide by 18 inches deep had a 3¼ inch diameter hole bored right through it. We had found the original maypole socket!

 The Maypole Socket Stone (upside down!)

The stone was repositioned in the centre of the ground and a rectangular area 20 yards long by 16 yards wide was enclosed by purpose built fencing with a special kissing gate in one corner to allow wheelchair access and a standard gate beside it for mower and maintenance access. 
More top soil was put down and the whole enclosure was turfed
All that remained now was to find a new maypole. A visit to the Council’s street sign depot yielded a 14 foot pole with a 3 foot extension.  

The extension was adapted by the addition of metal hoops to hold the flowers and ribbons and the top was adorned by a replica of the Maypole Pit Winding Gear. The idea for this came from the trainees’ supervisor, an Abram resident, who also actually made the replica.

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