This July: the English Civil War will return to Bolton!

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Cannon will fire, drums will sound, and swords will clash as schoolchildren from across Bolton get the chance to go back in time to the English Civil War – thanks to a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

A new project will see special education days staged at Bolton School to teach local children about their town’s part in the Civil War that rocked the nation in the 1640s.

Roundheads and Cavaliers will then descend on 7-8 July for ‘The Storming of Bolton’ – an exciting weekend of thrilling battles and fascinating ‘living history’ in the grounds of Bolton School, all free for local people and staged by costumed reenactors from The Earl of Manchester’s Regiment of Foote, the local regiment of the Sealed Knot reenactment society.

The Earl of Manchester’s Regiment was awarded a £9,800 regional grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund towards the costs of the project, which means it will be free for local families.

Thanks to the generous support of Bolton School, the project’s education days and first event in July will give youngsters the chance to see what life was like for ordinary people in Bolton in the 17th Century and aims to improve educational access for children from across the town.

Known as ‘the Geneva of the North’ due to its staunchly Puritan population, Bolton was attacked in May 1644 by forces led by King Charles’ nephew, the dashing Prince Rupert, on his way to relieve the siege of York. After repelling the first assault, Parliamentarian defenders hanged one of Rupert’s officers, which led to a notorious massacre when the Royalists finally stormed the town. The outmatched Parliamentarian commander and MP for Wigan, Colonel Alexander Rigby, pretended to be an enemy soldier before fleeing the defeat, which ended up being a huge propaganda coup for the Parliamentarians. Local magnate, the Earl of Derby, was later executed next to Bolton Market Cross for his part in the massacre and the third Civil War in 1651.

Headmaster of Bolton School Boys’ Division, Philip Britton, said: “We are very pleased to be able to share our facilities to enable this event to take place. It is an eye-catching way of reminding the young people of Bolton about an important moment in our history. We look forward to welcoming everyone in the summer.”

David Frederick, commanding officer of the Earl of Manchester’s Regiment of Foote, said: “To be able to provide such an immersive educational event like this with the ability to reach hundreds of local children is very exciting for both myself and for our regiment. We’d like to say a huge thank you to both the Heritage Lottery Fund and to Bolton School for making this possible.”

Morning and afternoon education classes (9.30am-12 noon and 1.30pm-3.00pm, for Year 5, 6 and 7 pupils) with experienced local reenactors at Bolton School are available to book now on 7th and 29th June. To book your class’s place on one of the free education sessions, contact Mrs Michelle Fox Makin at Bolton School on 01204 840201 or at BDInfo@boltonschool.org

Contacts:

Earl of Manchester’s Regiment of Foote public relations: Michael Molcher on 07821 405 772 or manchesterspr@ymail.com

Bolton School public relations: John Newbould on 01204 434788 or jnewbould@boltonschool.org.uk

Battle weekend details:

Where: Bolton School, Chorley New Rd, Bolton BL1 4PA

When: 7-8 July 2018

Provisional battle weekend activities:

10am – 4pm: a ‘living history’ display on Bolton School’s grounds will include traditional crafts, cooking, and talks about 17th Century life, as well as give children a special scavenger hunt so they can learn more about Bolton during the English Civil War.

2pm: a thrilling battle between Roundhead and Cavalier will be staged in the grounds, including cannon, muskets, and pikes.

About the Earl of Manchester’s Regiment of Foote:

Part of the Sealed Knot, the world’s oldest and Europe’s largest re-enactment society, the Earl of Manchester’s Regiment of Foote re-enacts an infantry regiment from the civil wars of 1642 to 1651. With members drawn from across the country, they portray the pike, musket, and artillery divisions of the personal regiment of Edward Montagu, the second Earl of Manchester, who was one of the leading Parliamentarian generals from 1643 to 1645. For more information about the regiment, go to http://www.earlofmanchesters.co.uk

About the English Civil War:

The Wars of the Three Kingdoms, popularly known as the English Civil War, was a series of armed conflicts across England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland between 1641 and 1652, which concluded with the Restoration of King Charles II in 1660. Far more complex than simply ‘Roundheads versus Cavaliers’, this was a tumultuous period of divided communities and shifting loyalties. Arguments between King Charles I and his Parliament over taxation, religion and control of the country spilled over into open conflict in 1642, with those who supported the King and those who supported Parliament taking up arms. The King was captured in 1646 and, after he helped provoke a second civil war, he was tried and executed in 1649. Over the period, an MP called Oliver Cromwell rose to prominence and eventually headed the English Commonwealth before becoming king in all but name as Lord Protector. He died in 1658, but his son and successor Richard Cromwell abdicated soon after. In 1660, the king’s eldest son Charles returned and was restored as King of England.

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TOMORROW: Civil War soldiers will escort King Charles through Oxford!

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18404022_1702258246526781_1913620980335891942_o.jpgTo celebrate the 400th birthday of Elias Ashmole, founder of the world-famous Ashmolean Museum, King Charles I will parade through the streets of Oxford – with us as his guard!

This Friday from 6.30pm, with standards advanced and drums beating, a parade of Civil War soldiers and officers will escort King Charles from Broad Street to the Ashmolean Museum.

A special LiveFriday event at the museum then runs from 7pm to 10.30pm – and tickets are FREE!

Find out more about the fascinating history of Oxford during the English Civil War, meet the troops, see the King sat in state, meet the townspeople, sign your own oath of allegiance to His Majesty and much, much more! Immerse yourself in the 1600s with period dancing, music and quizzes.

Members of the Earl of Manchester’s Regiment of Foote, along with friends from the Sealed Knot and English Civil War Society, will be on hand to introduce you to one of the most turbulent periods in Oxford’s history – when it became the other capital city of England!

This promises to be a very special evening at one of the most prestigious venues in the country. Tickets are FREE but booking is essential. (£1 booking fee) Book here >>

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Besiege Newark! This July, the Sealed Knot returns!

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The Queen’s Sconce has stood next to the town of Newark since 1644, when it formed part of the vast network of defences thrown up to protect this Royalist bastion from Parliamentarian forces.

This July, the Sealed Knot will be returning to Newark to stage a battle reenactment on the sconce, one of the best-preserved English Civil War defences in the country.

On Saturday 22 July and Sunday 23 July, we will be helping stage spectacular English Civil War battles and providing an insight into how people lived and died at Newark in the 1640s.

Home to the National Civil War Museum, Newark is the ideal place to discover more about this important period in British history. From thunderous battles featuring cannons, muskets, pike, and cavalry, to the encampment showing you the life and times of the English Civil War, this is something not to be missed.

Children can take part in specially-organised pike drills on the camp, where there will be an assortment of trades and crafts of the period.

Keep an eye on our blog for more information as we get closer to this fantastic event!

This Bank Holiday weekend: muskets, cannon and pike come to Northampton!

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17796753_1656906064395333_5347088845753045927_n.jpgExperience a nation at war with itself in the Parliamentarian heartland of Northamptonshire!

At Billing Aquadrome this Bank Holiday weekend, cannon will roar and musketeers will volley as an all action battle unfolds when members of the Sealed knot recreate two forces, one of the King Charles I and one of Parliament under the command of Sir Thomas Fairfax and Oliver Cromwell.

Alongside this the 17th Century village will consist of trades who supplied the armies and crafts of the period, all presented by people knowledgeable in their field.

We’re delighted to be returning to Billing Aquadrome, just outside the centre of Northampton, for a weekend of bringing the English Civil Wars to life with the Sealed Knot!

Date: 29 April to 1 May
Location: Billing Aquadrome, Crow Lane, Great Billing, NN3 9DA

Order of events
Saturday
11am – Living history camp opens
11am – Regimental arms displays
2pm – Large formation parade with firepower of two cannon, followed by skirmish
4.30pm- Living history closes.

Sunday
11am – Living history camp opens
11am – Army parade
2pm – Skirmish
4.30pm- Living history closes.

Monday
11am – Living history camp opens
12 noon – Skirmish
4pm- Living history closes.

This event is being organised and run by The London Brigade of the Armie of Parliament of the Sealed Knot Society.

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THIS SUNDAY: we mark 375 years to the day since the gates of Hull were shut on King Charles!

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On 23 April 375 years ago, the governor of Hull, Sir John Hotham, refused to allow King Charles to enter the city and access the weapons stored within its walls.

This small act of defiance heralded ten years of brutal civil war between the supports of the King and those of the English Parliament.

On Sunday 23 April – 375 years to the day – The Sealed Knot and The Earl of Manchester’s Regiment of Foote would like to invite you to bring the family and step back to this pivotal moment in Hull’s history at the dawn of the English Civil War – all taking place next to the remains of the Beverley Gate, the site of the unique stand-off between monarch and Parliament.

Re-enactors wearing the clothes of the period will march in the city centre to mark the 375th anniversary of Hotham’s defiance, bringing the sights and sounds of a 17th Century army on the march, with a special performance at the Beverley Gate to commemorate the occasion.

We’re very pleased to announce the schedule for this Sunday’s event:

11am – Youngsters can join in the occasion and make their own Civil War flags with Artlink, next to the Beverley Gate

11.30am – The costumed troops of the The Sealed Knot Society will form up on Paragon Street

11.45am – The Sealed Knot will walk down Paragon St, drums sounding and standards advanced, while The Lord Mayor and Keith Emerick from Historic England judge local youngsters’ flag designs

11.55am – The Sealed Knot will arrive at the Beverley Gate

12.00pm – The Town Crier will make a proclamation and the Lord Mayor will introduce the Playgoers Society

12.05pm – The Hull Playgoers Society will perform a play about Sir John Hotham and the closure of Hull’s gates on King Charles, 375 years ago

12.45 – Keith Emerick from Historic England will give a speech and the winning flags will be presented.

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Detail of  Wenceslas Hollar’s map of Hull from around 1640, showing the Beverley Gate

On 23 April 1642, Charles I arrived at the gates of Hull with 300 soldiers with the intention of securing the arsenal within for his looming war with Parliament.

However, Sir John Hotham had been made governor of the town and sent north by Parliament to stop the King’s design.

When Charles arrived at the Beverley Gate, Hotham refused him entry – with the novel political theory that an order from the King was not necessarily an order from the sovereign authority of that king.

Charles proclaimed Hotham a traitor and rode away disappointed. It was an early PR coup for Parliament, who could now argue that the King was attempting to arm himself for war. Within weeks, the first siege of Hull began – the first armed conflict of the English Civil Wars. That summer, the King raised his standard at Nottingham and the two sides were formally at war.

Hotham’s stand was the spark that lit the slow fuse of civil war and by the following September, England began a decade of conflict.

The complicated but tragic life of Sir John is currently being brought to life by the Royal Shakespeare Company, with Mark Addy starring as the doomed aristocrat in The Hypocrite.  Despite his position as the man who defied a king, Hotham and his son soon found themselves branded traitors and heading to the scaffold.

Marking the 375th anniversary of the stand-off that sparked the English Civil War

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On 23 April 375 years ago, the governor of Hull, Sir John Hotham, refused to allow King Charles to enter the city and access the weapons stored within its walls.

This small act of defiance heralded ten years of brutal civil war between the supports of the King and those of the English Parliament.

The Sealed Knot and The Earl of Manchester’s Regiment of Foote would like to invite you to bring the family and step back to this pivotal moment in Hull’s history at the dawn of the English Civil War – all taking place next to the remains of the Beverley Gate, the site of the unique stand-off between monarch and Parliament.

Reenactors wearing the clothes of the period will march in the city centre to mark the 375th anniversary of Hotham’s defiance, bringing the sights and sounds of a 17th Century army on the march, with a special performance at the Beverley Gate to commemorate the occasion.

The schedule for the day:

11am – Youngsters can join in the occasion and make their own Civil War flags with Artlink, next to the Beverley Gate

11.30am – The costumed troops of the The Sealed Knot Society will form up on Paragon Street

11.45am – The Sealed Knot will walk down Paragon St, drums sounding and standards advanced, while The Lord Mayor and Keith Emerick from Historic England judge local youngsters’ flag designs

11.55am – The Sealed Knot will arrive at the Beverley Gate

12.00pm – The Town Crier will make a proclamation and the Lord Mayor will introduce the Playgoers Society

12.05pm – The Hull Playgoers Society will perform a play about Sir John Hotham and the closure of Hull’s gates on King Charles, 375 years ago

12.45 – Keith Emerick from Historic England will give a speech and the winning flags will be presented.

Join the event on Facebook for up-to-the-minute event details

hothamhull.jpgOn 23 April 1642, Charles I arrived at the gates of Hull with 300 soldiers with the intention of securing the arsenal within for his looming war with Parliament.

However, Sir John Hotham had been made governor of the town and sent north by Parliament to stop the King’s design.

When Charles arrived at the Beverley Gate, Hotham refused him entry – with the novel political theory that an order from the King was not necessarily an order from the sovereign authority of that king.

Charles proclaimed Hotham a traitor and rode away disappointed. It was an early PR coup for Parliament, who could now argue that the King was attempting to arm himself for war. Within weeks, the first siege of Hull began – the first armed conflict of the English Civil Wars. That summer, the King raised his standard at Nottingham and the two sides were formally at war.

Hotham’s stand was the spark that lit the slow fuse of civil war and by the following September, England began a decade of conflict.

The complicated but tragic life of Sir John is currently being brought to life by the Royal Shakespeare Company, with Mark Addy starring as the doomed aristocrat in The Hypocrite.  Despite his position as the man who defied a king, Hotham and his son soon found themselves branded traitors and heading to the scaffold.

This Bank Holiday weekend, join us at Newstead Abbey!

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sealedknotThe air at Newstead Abbey will be filled with the smell of gunpowder and the sound of firing muskets over the Bank Holiday weekend!

The Earl of Manchester’s Regiment of Foote will be joining The Sealed Knot for an epic English Civil War siege in the stunning grounds of Newstead Abbey and park near Nottingham – come and see the siege camps, with demonstrations of arts martial and civilian, plus huge battles on Sunday and Monday next to the ruins of the Augustinian priory, that was the ancestral home of Lord Byron.

Tickets are available on the day at £10 per person, which includes parking and entry to the Abbey House. Children under 16 go free, though other concessions are not available.

For more information and directions, visit Newstead Abbey’s website.