A curious species which is starting to find itself at home in Sherwood Forest at this time of year is set to return again very soon.
The Whitby Krampus Run returns to Sherwood for the third year running later this month, having created quite a following in Nottinghamshire since they first descended on Robin Hood’s Forest in 2022.
These spectacular-looking beings originate in the folklore of the Alpine countries of Central Europe.
According to legend, the Krampus is a half-man, half-goat creature associated with the pagan winter solstice festivities.
While the legend extends back many centuries, the ‘Krampuslauf’, or the Krampus run, has become a much-anticipated event in Europe over the past 100 years, and more recently in the UK and the USA.
This year, Sherwood will be visited by the Whitby Krampus Run on Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st January.
The Krampus will begin moving among the ancient oaks and trails of Sherwood on the Saturday, eventually gathering at the majestic Major Oak.
From there, visitors will be invited to take part in a lantern parade from the tree back to the Visitor Centre.
Visitors can bring a torch or even make their own lantern in the Visitor Centre to light the way (materials and full instructions provided).
Then on Sunday, the Sheriff of Nottingham will be Sherwood to lead a parade back to the Major Oak to reclaim the forest and send the Krampus back to their mountain home.
A bird-seed shaker can be made in the Visitor Centre to take along the parade, as the Krampus aren’t keen on loud noise.
Once the Krampus have headed for the hills, the Sheriff will lead a wassailing ceremony to wish for good health for all of Sherwood’s trees in the coming year.
Visitors on the Saturday can also see The Calverton Real Ale and Plough Play Preservation Society perform another of the troupe’s hilarious traditional mummers plays in the shadow of the Major Oak.
The event gets underway at the Sherwood Forest Visitor Centre at Edwinstowe from 11am on Saturday 20th January, with the lantern parade setting off from the Major Oak at 4.30pm.
On Sunday 21st January, the Sheriff’s parade sets off from the Visitor Centre at 1.30pm.