Although it is not long since I went to Shaw House (see below) I was back there this weekend with Wayne for a Sealed Knot drill exercise. The Sealed Knot is an English Civil War re-enactment group with branches all over the country who act out events and battles from the 17th century to bring history to life.The parking at Shaw House is very close to the front of the building and we were able to drive right up to the area that had been marked out for the day. On getting out of the car we could see that they were already marching around the edge of the grass area to the beat of a drum.Shortly, another member of the group, dressed in period costume as a vicar or priest, led a service for ‘the fallen’ when prayers were said.Then they demonstrated the use of their pikes and charged the assembled onlookers. To protect the crowd there were two thin lines of red and white hazard tape which were exactly one pike length apart.The Newbury Town Council Lady Mayoress was also there enjoying events. However she was seen by a group of soldiers and arrested for feeding the Parliamentarians. She was then brought onto the battle field to be tried for this crime. To escape punishment she then read an oath of allegiance to King Charles.After this excitement they reformed and started muskets training. Each musketeer loaded their musket with gunpowder, and together they fired across the field. The musket firing created lots of loud bangs and a big plume of smoke. You could smell the gunpowder as it drifted across the field.As well as the action outside, there were people inside the house demonstrating domestic skills and medical treatment from the 17th century.As the day began to wind down the members of the Sealed Knot were very friendly and helpful in explaining what their role was in the events of the day, and they even let me try on a helmet and hold a musket.
Click the photos to see more from the gallery.www.thesealedknot.org.uk