Page last updated at 11:57 GMT, Friday, 23 April 2010 12:57 UK

Pageant of St George returns to London after 425 years

Man dressed as St George
The pageant was an annual feature of London life

A Pageant of St George has taken place in the City of London for the first time in 425 years.

St George paraded through the streets of the Square Mile, for the first time since 1585, when Elizabeth I was on the throne.

The patron saint of England was mounted on horseback with traditional figures of a king and his daughter and a lamb led by a maiden in the parade.

The pageant started at Armourers Hall in Coleman Street.

The occasion was an annual feature of London life from the time of Edward III, but faded away in the aftermath of the Reformation and English Civil War.

England's rich culture

The Worshipful Company of Armourers & Brasiers, whose forebears paraded in full regalia en route to St Paul's Cathedral, are behind its revival.

Tom Tudor-Pole, a member of the Armourers who had the idea or reviving the Pageant, said: "St George's Day is a great opportunity to recognise what binds us together and to celebrate England's rich culture, heritage and sporting traditions.

"The red cross of St George on its white background was adopted by Richard the Lionheart who brought it to England from the Crusades, and whose soldiers wore it on their tunics to avoid confusion in battle."



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