Re-enacting Saint George's day at Wrest Park for me will always bring back memories of looking after a 5 month old Benjamin Services at his first event, trying to ensure his fair skin did not burn too badly in the heat. Unfortunately this was 4 years later, the same April weekend was bitterly cold and damp, I suppose that was good news for some of the traders there though, as there seemed to be a never ending line of re-enactors returning from the market carrying bundles of army surplus blankets, or animal skins to wrap up warm in.
The basic re-enactment outline was the same as last time. A drill and military games display in the morning, Two "Saint George and the dragon" pageants, and a parade to finish off the day, this made it quite a relaxing day, with plenty of time in camp to talk to the public and catch up with fellow re-enactors. Hill made a long awaited return, and we also welcome another brave new member to the Retinue, Nicola Stokes, who survived the cold, damp, a knock she took in the week before the event, and still left promising to attend another event some time soon.Read more: Saint George's day at Wrest Park 2008
Bodelwyddan Castle was a new event for the intrepid members of Buckingham's Retinue, but like good men & women of Stafford we bravely entered that part of the world that has 'here be dragons' on the map.
Arriving at the event after a suprisingly easy trip to find the Castle was visible from the main road was a pleasant suprise, if only all sites were this easy to find! I had been told the group had a choice of pitches, either next to the beer tent or next to the portapotty's, as it turned out being sited next to those wonders of sanitary engineering was a blessing in disguise for not only was it easy to find them in the dark, it meant we were the first group the public encountered on their travel through the site - but more of that later.
Lincoln Castle was the first re-enactment that Buckingham's Retinue participated in this year as part of the "Wars of the Roses Federation". Three days of good weather meant we had plenty of time to catch up with people we have not seen for a while, entertain the masses of public who came to watch us, and enjoy the brilliant Ice cream shop located just outside the gates.
I have had an eye problem recently that is forcing me to wear an eye patch for events, and means that I am unlikely to be fighting this season. For the first few events I have been gently feeling my way working out what I can and can't do, for me Lincoln was the first event this year where I really felt back into the swing of things again. In the end, the only problem I had during the event was that whenever I left our camp I ended up spending ages explaining to fellow re-enactors who I had not seen for a while about why I had an eye patch on, what meds I was on, when I was likely to get better, etc., which meant that nipping to the loo could take half or three quarters of an hour.