On the Sunday of the 19th September or the first Sunday afterwards, the ceremony of Clypping takes place in the Churchyard. This is not to be confused with clipping which is something we do to the yew trees twice a year!
Clypping is an old English word which means embracing and during the special service, everyone is encouraged to form a circle round the Church, hold hands and so clyppe or embrace the Church. As we do this we sing the clypping hymn. It is a way of showing our thanks to God for our Church and asking him to bless it. It also reminds us that we are joined together as the community of Painswick.
We do not know how old the custom is but it became an annual event in the Victorian era. It has always been very strongly linked with the Painswick Feast, a festive occasion held in the Churchyard with its own special traditions. One of these is the eating of Puppy Dog Pie. There are a number of suggestions of how this came about but rest assured if you visit and are offered puppy dog pie, there will be no canine parts in it!