Teme Valley Times
Leominster Medieval Pageant got off to a rousing start with a piper-led procession through town on June 18th. Kind weather saw a multitude of activities, demonstrations and displays take place in the Priory’s grounds, on the Grange and on Pinsley Mead - just a stone’s throw from the Priory. At the demonstration of fire power, a notice on the boundary ropes stated ‘Warning! Do not cross this line. Any limbs past this point could be chopped, shot or blown off!’ Excellent commentaries accompanied the action with historical facts about fire power in medieval times. Demonstrations included early guns, a cannon and archery, including the comparative rates of fire of the longbow and crossbow. Axe-throwing on the Grange looked to be popular and youngsters and grown-ups could imagine scaling castle walls as they climbed the ‘rock tower’. Medieval music and Tudor dancing were among the more genteel activities, as were art and craft stalls inside and outside the Priory. A re-enactment of the Leominster skirmish, between the Lancastrians and Yorkists, offered another spectacle towards the end of the afternoon. In the Living History encampment there was plenty to see and do, including cooking, weaving, whittling and arrowmaking. You could question a scribe about his raw materials for making ink and try out a quill, or discover the kind of jobs he would undertake for people and ask if he could be trusted to write down exactly what you told him to! You could find out about medicines and cures or play ‘Fox and Geese’, ‘Alquerque’ or ‘Nine Men’s Morris’. Armour, cannon balls, warfare effects and fighting equipment such as swords, daggers and lances were all available for inspection and discussion. The standard of re-enactors was such that you could ask about almost anything that was on display and get an answer!
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