Tag Archives: Holiday

More Castle News and more Medieval | Knights in Shining Armour

I thought I’d start this post with a picture to remind you of yesterday’s entry. I think it’s an apt way to introduce to the events that took place at Leeds Castle…

Being so in awe of the Medieval Siege Society, and being in love with the people at Dover Castle, we took it upon ourselves to visit Leed’s Castle later on in the week where there were many other medieval re-enactment groups but also a few familiar faces (however none of the Earls, which was quite sad!! Note the picture above… I had to fit them in somewhere!!)
It was a whole different view point to medieval life than Dover Castle. Here there were knights… on horseback… jousting. Swoon!!!
It was an extremely impressive display they put on, with their horses all done up and their squires at the ready, it really was as though you had been transported back in time.

The knights looked all noble and the horses all majestic.

We attended a talk called ‘Arming the Knights’ which is pretty much what it says on the tin, (a head to toe guide on the armour that the knights wore). It turns out that back in the day a full set of armour would have been around £12, however these guys had spent almost thirty grand to get their look exactly right as if they really could have been a Medieval Knight. This alone demonstrates their passion and love towards their hobby and just how much effort they put into making the re-enactment as realistic and as special as possible.
They obviously put their hearts and souls into re-enacting and this really showed. They looked like the real deal.
We were wandering around between acts and came across Perterkin the fool who was just about to put on a performance. My sister tried to make a quick escape, worried that he would choose her to take part in his act and do embarrassing things, but we managed to reassure her stating the fact that there were many children around and surely he wouldn’t pick a 21 year old over the five year olds who would be much more willing to assist him. However, with saying this, she was the first person he picked on, dragging her out from the crowd and making her run in circles amongst a crowd of children. It was hilarious!
After she’d done her part, Perterkin then called on my dad for assistance. He was trying to get up on some stilts and needed my dad to help him stand. However, this ended up in a right mess as he kept on falling over and landing in a heap upon my dad’s shoulders. He eventually stood up by using my dad’s head to sit on whilst he got his balance. Perterkin’s quote ‘’Place your head at my nethers’’ is a quote my dad isn’t going to live down for quite some time.
I so hope we bump into the Medieval Siege Society again sometime, I’ll definitely be keeping an eye out for where their latest events will be taking place. Check them out if I have convinced you that they really are an extraordinary group to go and watch. Definitely see them if they’re in your area!
@medievalsiege

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Dover Castle | The War of the Roses

On the Sunday we visited Dover Castle which was such an extravagant building. It was probably one of the largest castles we’ve been to (and trust me, we’ve been to a lot). But it wasn’t just the building which was beautiful, we had caught the castle at a good time as The Medieval Siege Society was there re-enacting The War of The Roses and when you’re in a field surrounded by broad, bearded men with long curly hair dressed in armour and looking all strong, there really is no place you’d rather be!
We explored the tunnels which ran under the castle. They were dark and cold and I would imagine that when the castle was still in use they would probably be quite scary. They were very much like a maze and I’d be afraid of getting lost in them!
The tunnels bought us up into the castle grounds and we headed to the main tower which was situated right in the centre of the castle’s walls. When entering the tower you were encapsulated by the haunting sound of medieval music. It was so raw and so loud that you could hear it throughout the whole tower. It echoed down the stone corridors and every drum beat reverberated around the spiral staircases. We approached the room where the melodic tunes were coming from and there was a band of people dressed in everyday medieval attire playing their instruments to a line of what looked like medieval royalty (which later turned out to be The Earl of March: future King of England and The Earl of Warwick). Earl March demanded that one of the children, who was part of the re-enactment, went and got his helmet and when presenting the helmet to him, knelt at his foot. It was great to see people act out the past and take it so seriously. I was actually intimidated by him.
My mum thought the whole experience was pretty cool, and so asked Earl March if we could have a photo taken with them. He discussed this with the rest of the nobles and arranged it for when the music had finished. Little did I know at the time that I was the one being nominated by my family for the photo and when it came to be, Earl March pointed to the ground and demanded that I knelt at their feet. I really wasn’t expecting to kneel at their feet! I thought I’d just be able to stand next to them and have a nice photo, but nope! Anyway, it was very funny, and what should I expect if I was having a photo with the future King of England? Plus it meant I got Earl Warwick’s attention, so I guess it paid off.
The battle re-enactment that the society put on throughout the day was brilliant and also hilarious! There were two sides, the Lancastrians, who were attacking the castle and the Yorkists who were defending. Within the middle of the field there was a hill, of which the re-enactors were using as the castle moat and oh how they struggled to get up and down the hill in all of their armour. Earl Warwick set off running down the hill to battle and with all of his momentum behind him and the weight of his helmet, he ended up going into a spontaneous dive forward roll. The look of surprise on his face was amazing. I don’t know if he was more shocked or the audience!  Though he took it extremely well and immediately got back up with a smile on his face, taking a small bow with an applaud from the crowd and then *SPOILER ALERT* carried on to win the battle.
Earl Warwick looking all handsome after he won the battle. I must admit, after watching this guy re-enact the role of Warwick throughout the day, I did develop a soft spot for him.
It really does make you want to be a part of the re-enacting society, or just to be medieval! They were a very passionate set of people and with them taking what they did so seriously it made the event extremely special.
I just want to relive that day at Dover Castle again!

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My Canterbury Tale | The Beginning

Hello everyone, I’m currently writing with post-holiday blues as I have just returned home from spending a week discovering the historic landscape of Kent. My family and I stayed in the small town, Chatham (which is just outside Canterbury) in a gorgeous 18th century cottage. It was so tiny and idyllic and was situated in the perfect location as it was right next door to a little country pub with a train station just a five minute walk down the lane. Over the past few years we’ve stayed in many cottages around England and I can honestly say that this cottage is the most unique and beautiful one we’ve stayed in yet. With beamed ceilings and a huge open fire, it really was a stunning building, if not a little spooky at night!
My sister and I were staying in the attic which had slanted beamed roofs and an impressive chimney breast which was a statement piece on all three floors.
We were lucky with the weather too. We had rain for only two days of our trip, but when I say rain, it really did pour down. We got absolutely soaked one day in Canterbury so when returning to the cottage we lit the open fire and all four of us sat around it getting warm whilst playing quizzes and watching The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel – a charming film which I recommend you should watch if you haven’t already.
Stay tuned over the next few days to see what we got up to on our jollies, let’s just say it involves, knights, Earl Warwick, two Kings of England and Batman… Quite an eclectic mix of things!

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