It was the first proper event of the year for Newcastles Regiment this weekend and we were very lucky to be involved with a big event in Newark, Nottinghamshire.
This weekend, it was the launch of the National Civil War Centre, the first museum/centre of it’s kind to be dedicated entirely to the English Civil Wars. Newark itself was an important location at the time and the town was staunchly Royalist, until it was surrended by order of the King in May 1646, ending the third siege on the town in as many years.
The English Civil Wars are an important part of British History and many of the things that happened have a direct impact on the lives we have today. Unfortunately it doesn’t always get the same amount of recognition as other periods of history such as the Tudors and the Victorians.
Without these battles though, we wouldn’t have the parliamentary system we see today, and the reason why over time, the British Monarchy has become more of a figurehead but has considerably little politcal power.
It’s wonderful to see that these important wars that were a turning point for our country in more ways than one are now being nationally recognised and it is possible to find out all about them at the new centre.
We were able to take part in two well planned, exciting and demanding battles that put our pikeman to the test after a winter of over indulgence! The musket block were able to enjoy themselves as the battlefield was large and the blocks were well spaced out.
As well as this, we enjoyed spending the Saturday in the town. We were encouraged to head to town in our kit to allow people in the town to see us and ask questions about what was going on for the rest of the weekend. The locals of the town were extremely welcoming and had obviously been looking forward to the event. They were enthusiastic, interested and getting excited for the battles themselves on the Sunday and Monday. The whole town had a buzz about it, which made the event even more enjoyable and dynamic for us as re-enactors.
The highlight of the weekend for most of those involved was the parade and memorial service in the town square on the Monday morning. The streets were lined with people all the way and the noise of so many drums playing through the streets of the centre of the town was incredible. There was a 17th Century sermon from Sealed Knot Vicar Ian Dicker and the whole service was rounded off by a musket volley from all the musketeers in the square which was immediately followed by the bellringers in the town’s church starting to play. The atmosphere was incredible and so many people, both re-enactors and spectators will take away that memory as a highlight of the weekend’s events.
On a more personal level to the regiment, we were able to welcome two new pikeman Nathan and James and a new Musketeer, Bob. James and Bob both loved their weekend with us and are looking forward to coming back to join in again in the future. Nathan has gone on to join us for the rest of the year and is planning to attend many more of our events this season. He thoroughly enjoyed his time with us and had this to say about it.
Well when I first arrived I was a bit nervous but everyone was very kind. The pike push was the best part of it and everyone was very patient because I was a newbie. The Sealed Knot and the regiment themselves are like a second family I felt like I fitted right in and l loved the weekend.
It is so nice to see that Nathan had such a good time, and also so good to see he’s already a pro at dramatic pretend deaths!!
The regiment are now very much looking forward to our next event at Stanford Hall in Leicestershire at the end of the month.
Below are some links to a local media reports and a youtube video from the weekend.
Youtube Video by Chris Connell
If this post has intrigued you and you think this is something that you would like to give a try one weekend, as always you can head to our Joining Us page to find out how to do just that.
All images are provided by kind permission of Rusty Aldwinckle, Sealed Knot photographer. If you would like to see more of her work, please click here.