A LANTERN parade inspired by a folk tale will bring a touch of magic to Haverfordwest.

The story of the Skeleton Woman and the Fisherman is the theme for the up-coming ‘River of Lights’ parade, organized by The Lab arts and regeneration project in partnership with local artist Toby Downing and Rowan Matthiessen of SPAN Arts.

“We chose this story because it’s symbolic of the re-birth of Haverfordwest,” said The Lab’s Guy Norman.

In case you haven’t heard the ancient yarn, it tells of a stretch of river haunted by the skeleton of a woman who drowned there. One day, a young fisherman hooked her and reeled her in. The skeleton woman struggled and writhed, getting her bones jumbled up in the fishing line. Expecting to pull up his best ever catch, the fisherman was shocked to see a skull emerge from the water. Terrified, he tried to row away, but he could not shake the skeleton woman off. He slowly noticed she was beautiful, and, feeling sorry for her, untangled her from his line and straightened out her jumbled bones. As a result his care, the skeleton woman was magically brought back to life, and the pair lived happily ever after……

The Lab invites anyone who would like to make a lantern and take part in the parade to attend a workshop at its base, the old Ocky White’s department store on Haverfordwest’s riverside. Sessions are taking place today (Wednesday, October 21), and on October 26, 29 and 30 from 10.30am to 4pm.

SPAN Arts is also holding lantern workshops at Bloomfield House, Narberth, on October 25; Clarbeston Road’s Memorial Hall on October 27, and Maenclochog Village Hall on October 28.

The parade will set off from The Lab at 6pm on Saturday, October 31, and make its way to Fortune’s Frolic, where the climax will be a dramatic fire sculpture.