We’ve covered some of the forgotten Christmas traditions, so it only seems right to look at some of the forgotten New Year traditions from the UK. Would you incorporate any of these into your New Year celebrations.

Drinking a hot pint

The Scottish are the masters of New Year, their Hogmany traditions bring people to the country every year but this is one tradition that has fallen to the way side. To celebrate the start of a new year, revellers would enjoy a hot pint – a concoction of beer, whisky, eggs, sugar and spices served warm in a flagon or kettle. At midnight, the flagon was passed around and everyone would have a dram of the hot pint before continuing the celebrations.

Something similar used to be popular in northern England too, especially in the Peak District area. They would serve a drink made of beer, eggs, spice, milk and currants called a posset. It was normally served hot, so naturally for the New Year, it would be served cold. The lady of the house would place their wedding ring in the drink and whoever found it would be married by the end of the coming year.

Sooty footprints

One way of seeing what the new year had in store for you was by spreading the ashes from the fire and seeing what direction the foot prints were facing. At the end of your New Year’s Eve celebrations, you would spread the remnants of the fire across the ground floor of your home and the following morning, the residents would look to see what direction the footprints were facing. If the prints were pointed to the door, it meant there would be a death in the family but if it pointed away, it meant that there would be a new baby born.

Eating God cakes

This one mainly took place in the English city of Coventry, but basically there was a tradition to make a sell a particular cake on New Year’s Day – they were known as God Cakes and were similar to a mince pie but were triangular.

Cake features a fair bit in forgotten New Year traditions, in Ireland there was a custom where the head of each household would take a freshly made cake and then throw it out the front door, supposedly to be well fed for the coming year.

Do you fancy bringing any of these traditions back?




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