Bank Holiday Monday August 25, 10am – 5pm
This August Bank Holiday Monday, visitors to Worcester's Commandery will be transported back to 1651 and one of the most turbulent days in the history of one of the city's most historic buildings.
As soldiers were set to march upon Worcester, The Commandery changed from a family home to becoming the Headquarters of the Royalist Army during the Battle of Worcester. The Bank Holiday event aims to recreate the upheavals of that fateful time and relive the preparations for battle, with visitors invited to take part in the activities.
Visitors can explore the soldiers’ camp in the courtyard, meet the Wylde's servant left behind as the family flees and learn about the hardships of the common soldier, from surgery and medicine to the arms and weapons of the infantry, cavalry and artillery. They can take part in the training drills of the musket, pike and cannon and have a go at traditional 17th Century crafts from hand cutting quills to making candles and pouches, and watch 17th Century food and drink demonstrations. Finally, a puppet show explains the importance of this special date in Worcester's history for younger visitors.
The Commandery played a vital role during the English Civil War as Headquarters for the Royalist Soldiers. The Battle of Worcester was a decisive victory for Oliver Cromwell, sending the future Charles II back into exile and giving Parliament a mandate to rule.
The Civil War Headquarters event is on the final day of the Worcester Festival, followed by the traditional fireworks finalé in the evening.
Entry to The Commandery and the special event is free to all Commandery card holders and Worcester City residents on production of a Worcester City Council tax bill. Otherwise entry is £5.50 for adults, £2.50 for children and a family ticket costs just £13. Visitors can bring a picnic and stay all day, or enjoy refreshments from the brand new canal-side pop-up café.
David Nash, Commandery Manager, says: "It is important that we remember the part played by The Commandery during this most historic period in Worcester's history. This special event includes a whole day of activities suitable all the family. We hope it will attract Worcester residents and visitors to our historic city, and that all our visitors will leave feeling they have experienced a small part of what it was like to be in Worcester in 1651."
The Bank Holiday Monday event is followed by traditional Battle of Worcester commemorative events including a series of talks, tours and demonstrations at The Commandery on August 30 and 31, and the annual Drumhead Ceremony in association with the Battle of Worcester Society on Wednesday September 3, 5.30-8.30pm including the atmospheric anniversary march from The Commandery to Fort Royal Hill.
For further information please see www.museumsworcestershire.org.uk, or contact The Commandery on 01905 361821.