Traditions and Holidays

On New Year's Eve, people traditionally take a shower in the fountains in Trafalgar Square! The Christmas tree is an annual gift from Norway.
      On February 14, St. Valentine's Day, many people send a card to the one they love or someone whom they have fallen in love with. People usually do not sign these cards and a lot of time is spent trying to guess who has sent them!
Pancake Day
     On Pancake Tuesday, they eat lots of pancakes. These are made of flour, milk and eggs, and fried in a hot pan.
     Easter eggs
     At Easter time, the British celebrate the idea of new birth by giving each other chocolate Easter eggs which are opened and eaten on Easter Sunday. On Good Friday bakers sell hot cross buns, which are toasted and eaten with butter. Easter Monday is a holiday and many people travel to the seaside for the day or go and watch one of the many sporting events, such as football or horse-racing.
May is here
     As summer comes, Britain likes to celebrate the end of the winter on May 1. At school children may dance traditional spring dances such as the Maypole, when they weave their brightly coloured scarves into a beautiful pattern around a long pole.
Ghosts and witches
     Halloween means 'holy evening', and takes place on October 31. This festival is particularly connected with witches and ghosts.
     At parties people dress up in strange costumes and pretend they are witches. They cut horrible faces in potatoes and other vegetables and put a candle inside, which shines through the eyes. People may play different games such as trying to eat an apple from a bucket of water without using their hands.
     For most British families this is the most important festival of the year, it combines the Christian celebration of the birth of Christ with the traditional festivities of winter.
            Most families decorate their houses with brightly-coloured paper or holly, and they usually have a Christmas tree in the corner of the front room, glittering with coloured lights and decorations.
     One of the most main traditions of this festival is the giving of presents. Family members wrap up their gifts and leave them at the bottom of the Christmas tree to be found on Christmas morning.
     At some time on Christmas Day the families will sit down to a big turkey dinner followed by Christmas pudding. 
     December 26 is also a public holiday, Boxing Day, and this is the time to visit friends and relatives or to be a spectator at one of the many sporting events.

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