New Year's Eve Traditions: Coal & Gold (Scotland) - Red Ted Art's Blog : Red Ted Art's Blog

New Year’s Eve Traditions: Coal & Gold (Scotland)

| December 22, 2012 | 1 Comment

Today’s New Year’s Eve Tradition is again more of a “New Year’s Day Tradition”. But I am sure you will forgive me the “New Year’s Eve” title! I welcome Hannah to share her family’s traditions all the way from Scotland with us!

Hannah a mummy of 2 boys and writer of beauty, fashion, lifestyle and parenting at A New Addition blog tells us about her families New Year tradition.

As a born and bred Coventry girl my family’s traditions aren’t very exotic, I think it originates from Scotland. For as far as I can remember  until I moved out with my own little family I can remember new year’s eve being just me, my mum and dad. They would always let me stay up late to watch the queens speech and the fireworks and make sure the first day of the new year went swiftly after all the what happens the first day of the year happens all year round don’t you know! This is something we are now carrying on with our own boys. However this is not the tradition I wanted to share with you all.

The New Year’s Day Tradition

The tradition is called the first footer and this entailed me walking around to the front door with a piece of coal and a £20 note of which I was never allowed to keep. Knocking/ringing the bell and then them letting me back into the warmth being the first person (footer) to enter the house in the new year and bringing my gifts for the household!

I have done some research on this to be able to explain a little further and found that the ‘gifts’ the first footer can bring vary and all have different meanings. These gifts include a coin, bread, salt, coal, or a drink (usually whisky – but I think that is because it originates from Scotland) and the reason behind them is that each item represents something within life for example financial prosperity, food, flavour, warmth, and good cheer.

Unfortunately I also found that having someone faired haired carrying out this important task is more likely to bring you bad luck! Guess my parents missed that part, so things may start looking up for them now my bald eagle father will be taking over the duties!

I hope you all have a fantastic 2013!

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Category: New Year's Eve

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  1. maggy says:

    First footing is Scottish. I am originally from Edinburgh. I can remember this: the first foot over your threshold on Jan 1 has to be a tall dark man carrying the gifts of something to eat (usually a cake called black bun), something to drink (usually whisky), and something to keep you warm (coal) during the coming year. Neighbours firstfoot each other well into the night making it a night long party. Maybe that’s why its a holiday lol.

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