Oak Apple Day

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Oak apple.jpg

Jersey, or at least some of its leading citizens, were staunch supporters of Charles II during the English Civil War and the Restoration of the Monarchy was celebrated annually afterwards, as it was in England, on 29 May as Oak Apple Day.

The last official celebration was in 1807, as commented on two years later by John Stead in his Picture of Jersey:

"On the King's Warren (Gorey) it has been a custom for several years for many Gentlemen of the Island to assemble on 29 May and hold a feast in Honour of the happy Restoration of Charles II and the Overthrow of Fanaticism. At a Meeting of this Description on 29 May 1807 His Excellency Lieut-General Don, the present Deputy Governor, attended.""

Although the day was recognised in island schools for many years afterwards, this was the last official function. An attempt in 1955 to reintroduce an annual commemoration of the Restoration failed when Deputy F A L de Gruchy failed to gain support for a proposition calling for the Jersey flag to be flown over the States Building and Royal Court on 29 May.

The States did issue a special penny to commemorate the tercentenary of the Restoration in 1960.

The day was also when the annual Militia review was held, until it was moved to 24 May to coincide with Queen Victoria's birthday. It ceased to be a public holiday in England after 1859.

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