IT was polling day all over again for one Abingdon street as the community joined together and basked in the sunshine to take part in a centuries old tradition.

The Brewery Tap in Ock Street was the venue for the ‘mock mayor’ election on Saturday to elect the ‘Mayor of Ock Street.’

The ancient tradition is held each year by the residents of Ock Street and the streets around it. Traditionally, the election took place on the day of the annual horse fair but now takes place on the Saturday closest to June 19.

The role of the mock Mayor is to keep the civic mayor up to the task and communicate the townspeople’s point of view, and comes from an age when not everybody was able to vote.

Harry Knight was elected mock mayor on the day and also celebrated his third electoral victory, having taken the crown in 2014 and 2016.

He said: “It is a unique tradition that has been going for many years and it is a great honour and a privilege to be elected mayor of Ock Street.

“The tradition goes back a long way and there are very few towns which still do it.

“It is good to keep the tradition alive and to bring the community together.”

The day included dancing and celebrations by the Abingdon Traditional Morris dancers.

After polling, which closed at 4pm, the elected mayor was hoisted onto a chair outside the pub by the Morris dancers and paraded around the town, as is tradition.

The day ended with a supper for the revellers at about 8pm.

Those taking part said they enjoyed the unique tradition and that it helped unite the community and bring people together.

Abingdon Traditional Morris dancer Rob Charlton, 43, said: “We are one of only two left in the country that do this.

“It’s a bit of fun really and it keeps the tradition alive.

“It has been good today, especially with the sunshine.

“But also quite a workout.”

One spectator and former Abingdon resident Zoe Cox, 25, said that her father Roger Cox had been elected mock Mayor on no less than seven occasions.

She said: “It’s very Abingdon. I love it, it’s such a nice atmosphere.

“I grew up here and it’s really nice to see lots of people here every year.

“There are more and more people coming to it.”

Fellow visitor Martin Dean added: “We come here every year, its a really nice family event.

“It is very unusual really and its not something that you see everywhere anymore.”