Flora day celebrations in Helston

Flora day
Flora Day sees the town awash with colour, music and dance to welcome in the spring Photo: ITV West Country

Thousands of people will be dancing through the streets of Helston in Cornwall today for one of the country's oldest surviving customs. The ancient tradition of Flora Day sees the town awash with colour, music and dance to welcome in the spring.

Flora day
The dances start at seven am Credit: ITV West Country

It's not often you will see elegant couples top hats and tails parading through a high street shop but Flora Day is quite unique.

A good night's sleep is essential as the dances start at seven am and weave their way through the town marking the coming of spring and passing of winter.

Flora day
Between the dances the Hal-an-Tow, a boisterous old mummers play takes place Credit: ITV West Country

Between the dances the Hal-an-Tow, a boisterous old mummers play full of legends springs into action.

More than one thousand youngsters from local schools take part every year for the children's dance, they learn the routines from the age of six.

Flora day
It is being held on a weekday for the first time Credit: ITV West Country

The main dance takes place at midday where men wear morning dress and women wear ball gowns. The celebrations are finished with an evening dance.

The day is usually celebrated on a saturday but today is the first time it is being held on a weekday.