This fascinating drone footage gives a bird’s-eye view of yesterday’s Shrovetide football match in Alnwick.
The parish of St Michael took the bragging rights in the annual fixture, beating rivals St Paul 1-0 in a fiercely-contested game.
Shrovetide veteran Lee Pattinson scored the contest’s only goal – known as a hale. It was his third in as many years and took his overall goal tally up to about eight.
The drone footage, captured by the Northumbrian Filming Company, gives a different perspective of yesterday’s game, which was played over a furlong-in-length pitch and was once again full of the usual thrills, spills and no-holds-barred tackling, as well as grassy knolls and muddy puddles.
The fixture began in traditional fashion, with the ball being dropped from Alnwick Castle’s Barbican to the crowds below. The Duke of Northumberland did the honours this year.
Led by a piper, the players, spectators and the Shrovetide committee then marched down The Peth to the match field, which was full of divots, lumps and bumps. The game attracted a good number of competitors, with Shrovetide committee member Archie Jenkins clocking around 65 players, which included American students from St Cloud State University, who are currently studying at Alnwick Castle.
After this, the ball was kicked into the River Aln, prompting a mad scramble in the water to reach it first and carry it to the opposite bank. As in previous years, it was a family affair, as Ali Miller, 23, once again helped secure the match ball. This time round, he threw the ball to cousin Harry Brown, 15, who carried it to the other side.
Alnwick’s Shrovetide football match is a historic one, with the first recorded game being played in the town in 1762.