August Bank Holiday has rolled around for this year and once again it was our biggest event of the year. This year we were at the beautiful Scampston Hall in North Yorkshire and we had a wonderful weekend with a particularly memorable (or in some cases a little hazy!) cocktail party!
After battling some incredibly awful Bank Holiday Traffic, the regiment started to arrive at the grounds of Scampston Hall on Friday afternoon and pitched tents in the spacious campsite. We made a big space in the middle of our campsite for our new and improved Car Bar (no pictures this time, see previous pictures here), The Landrovers Return and our fire bowl knowing full well we’d need plenty of space to party on Saturday night.
Friday evening was a chance for everyone to catch up, especially seeing those who hadn’t been able to make the recent events and it was a lovely crisp evening as we went to see what new beers and ciders were on offer in the beer tent for the weekend. After an evening which ended in being sat round the first fire of the weekend it was time to retire to our tents.
Saturday was a free day and many of the regiment headed into the beautiful local town of Malton. Known as Yorkshire’s food capital, there was plenty on offer including some fab tea shops, independent food and drink retailers, traditional shops such as a rope makers, antiques shops and a farmers market. It was a lovely sunny day too which made ambling around the town even lovelier.
Those who didn’t venture into the town enjoyed a day of relaxation on the camp before heading off to the society’s AGM in the afternoon. Regimental member Alyssa Cooper was officially announced as the society’s new Finance Director and Lewis Mackie was voted onto the Board of Directors. Not only does this add feathers to the regimental cap, it’s great that two younger members of the society are keen to get actively involved in the running of the society for the future.
After the AGM it was party prep time as Beth K and Chris has planned a regimental Cocktail party. We all put on our best cocktail attire and started the party at around 7pm. Everyone brought their pre-arranged contributions and the cocktails, wine and beer flowed all evening. It was a great time and a fab opportunity for the whole regiment to come together. It was also fab to see everyone dressed up in their fancy clothes too! A real treat all round.
Our fancy clothes were all shown up though by our members Tom and Mu who decided to go for something a little different in their attire, instead of coming in cocktail party attire, they came dressed as cocktails! Mu looked fabulous as a Mojito and Tom’s brilliant coat made an excellent Tequila Sunrise outfit! A big 10/10 for costume effort!
We continued the party at the beer tent, dancing to the music until it closed before returning to our camp to party some more at our fire pit. It was a wonderful evening full of singing, dancing and cocktails and definitely a night to remember (except maybe the end after 1 too many cocktails…).
We awoke Sunday morning, some of us more bright eyed and bushy tailed than others, it has to be said. That morning was spent doing drill which sorted the thick heads out and then heading to join the rest of the Royalist Army as the old Lord General stepped down and the new one stepped up.
After some complicated shuffling around to try and get the whole army in one photo, we headed back to camp briefly to grab lunch before forming up ready for a pre-battle display the host regiments had asked us to take part in.
We got onto the field for battle and had the first of two excellent battles. Both the musket and the pike blocks fought well and won lots of their engagements. It was great to see our pike block fighting so well together after all the hard work they’d been putting in over the season so far. The musket also turned out in large numbers and stood out in their white coats in their good location near the crowd line.
Our younger members also had a great Sunday. Our apprentices Alex, James and Ollie spent the morning with Master of Apprentices Geoff and got stuck in with their drill session on the Living History camp in front of the members of the public.
Meanwhile younger members Douglas, Ozzy, Romilly and Robyn also enjoyed a day of fun exploring the camp and having endless hours of playtime back at the campsite too.
After a hot but enjoyable first battle and a while to relax some of our pike block went off to practise live firing again after a successful session of doing this at our previous major at Newark. The Musketeers once shared their expert knowledge with the pike block and everyone got a chance to do a few practise shots. It’s going to be very beneficial to the regiment to have more people trained up in Musketeering and have the ability to be more versatile as a regiment in the future.
We took it a little easier than the night before but still enjoyed a few hours of dancing in the beer tent before coming back to the camp fire. We did a lot of regimental singing, as usual but as the night drew on Moge and Debbie, both of whom have been in the society for over 20 years started to bring out some of the bawdier songs we only sing on occasion which resulted in much laughter. Moge even wheeled out his specialty, ‘Father Abraham’ and we all got up to do the actions which ended as hilariously as you can imagine. All in all, another fabulous regimental evening.
Monday morning dawned and after another session of drill and a quick lunch again, we prepared for a second round of fighting. We were broadly against the same regiments as the day before and again fought well against them, often winning our pushes or hand to hand combat.
The society has links with similar organisations in Germany and our pike block had the pleasure of fighting against a block of German pike and everyone seemed to have a great time. They even came round to find us at the end of the weekend to say goodbye and hand out small bottles of Schnapps they’d bought over as a way of saying thank you which was a lovely gesture. It was also nice to briefly meet them off the field too and with one of our regimental members now living over in Germany and visiting for the weekend, we were able to have some conversation too. A great little addition to the weekend.
After the battle on Monday, the majority of the regiment packed up camp and started their journeys back home, a little bit deflated after such a great weekend of fun and friendship. Although there are still a few more events to come this season, August Bank Holiday does always signify the peak of the season and it is the point of realisation that unfortunately, the season is going to be coming to a close again soon ready for the approach of Autumn and Winter.
A few of the regiment decided to stay the extra night and scored a respectable score in the pub quiz held in the beer tent on the final night before heading off from camp on Tuesday morning.
So that’s another August Bank Holiday done and dusted with many things to look back on fondly in years to come. Here’s to our next event at Edgehill in September!
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Photos by Rusty Aldwinckle, Steve Liddle and Kev Salmon.