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St George To Do Battle In Coventry

The dragon will try his luck once more against St George in an action replay of their legendary battle in Coventry city centre next Monday.

The huge dragon, which needs five people to bring it to life, will meet up with the hero knight in the Upper Precinct during the St George's Day celebrations on 23 April organised by the City Centre Company.

Roger Bailey as St GeorgeRoger Bailey of Coventry Guild of Tour Guides will play the part of St George and big audiences will witness his stirring duels with the mythical creature.

"I always win. The dragon never seems to learn," joked Roger, who has vanquished his medieval foe several times in the past.

"St George has strong historical links with Coventry. The red cross on a white background is the symbol of the Knights Templar, who owned a lot of land in Coventry," said Roger.

"In fact until two or three centuries ago it was accepted that St George was born in Coventry and died here."

The four metres tall dragon is supplied by The Portly Pixie, a local company that specialises in live action fantasy role-playing.

Helen Holdsworth, co-owner of the company said:

"It is an impressive sight and I am sure the audiences will be thrilled by the action.

"It is so large it has to be operated by four men inside the body and another to work the head. When it moves along it is very impressive, but somehow I don't think it will provide an upset by overcoming St George."

The day's entertainment also includes performances around the city centre by Coventry Mummers, who will stage several ritual plays. Mumming was a rural activity that originated in mediaeval times and was usually performed by local actors in houses, pubs and streets, traditionally around the turn of the year.

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CWN / Business / A-Z / City Centre Company Coventry / 18 Apr 01
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