The Mollag Bands: A Manx Christmas tradition

'the town has been infested with these dreadful nuisances...'

One of the most rowdy and unruly Christmastime traditions in the Isle of Man was the Mollag Bands. These groups of young lads roam around the Isle of Man's towns making 'a rare din' with their singing, dancing and loud homemade instruments.
An essential part of the tradition was the mollag (an inflated sheep's bladder, traditionally used as a buoy), with which they would hit people on the street as a part of the fun, and also as an inducement for people to give them money, which they received generally to make them go away!

In order to explain the tradition better, we asked a group of people to re-enact the tradition, thereby taking Kirk Michael completely unawares!

More about this tradition for Kegeesh Ommidjagh (Foolish Fortnight) Christmas can be found here: https://www.culturevannin.im/manx_year.html