14 February 2020

A mysterious Norfolk Valentine's tradition

Jack Valentine playing tricks on local children.
 Illustration: Annette Hudson
Yarmouth Mercury 13 Feb 2020
From the (Great) Yarmouth Mercury.

"It's a historic Valentine's tradition which began in Norfolk - and while it might be a mystery to some, plenty of families are keeping it alive and kicking. The Jack Valentine ritual would see the character - otherwise known as Old Father Valentine or Old Mother Valentine - disappear into thin air after knocking at the door and dropping off gifts."

I seem to recall this as a child, as did 80% of those who responded to the Mercury's poll.

Does anyone else have any recollection of this tradition in Norfolk or elsewhere?

1 comment:

Bryan Douglas Cook said...

In Northumberland there is "knocky door ginger" except no presents are left!