Posted by: lindsaygoes | October 15, 2010

In Battle

Battle of Hastings re-enactment

Getting up early on a Sunday is always a bit of a pain, but I made the effort to get up before 7am to head to the Battle of Hastings re-enactment (apparently the largest re-enactment in the world). Things weren’t looking promising initially as it was all grey and foggy when I got up, and even when I arrived in London I couldn’t see the tops of the tall buildings as they disappeared into the sky. However, as the getting out of bed was the hard part, and I’d already done that, I persisted and on the train to Battle the sky gradually started clearing, and by the time we got there it was practically all blue!

Before entering the Abbey we made a bit of a stop in an old Tudor pub, which was filled with costumed people, which added to the atmosphere, and then I had a typical English cream tea – a cup of tea with a scone with jam and cream. Probably good to do once, but I might go for chocolate cake next time!

After that we headed into the abbey, where I realised that the telephoto zoom on my lens was going to make it difficult to take photos of buildings, but then I had fun taking ultra zoomy photos of a falcon, so the lens redeemed itself. As we got to the battlefield, we saw the middle of a battle between two different viking groups, and then we had a chat to one of the vikings (who had to hide some of his re-enactment gear in his garage so his wife wouldn’t see the extent of it).

Then we had a bit of a wander around all the tents, and again the atmosphere with everyone’s costumes and set ups was amazing. I did find that my big lens was quite good for taking more candid portraits from a distance.

After that we grabbed some seats on the ground, and watched some archery demonstrations (firing at a fake deer) and then it was a bit of a history lesson before the main event, the Battle of Hastings. By that time the weather had really warmed up so I felt sorry for everyone wondering round with padding, chain mail, carrying swords and shields. Everyone participating really got into the action, although the children around us didn’t seem to appreciate it too much, especially the one behind me who kept poking me in the back with his plastic sword (didn’t hurt, but he missed the itchy spot) and then lay down on my foot. I thought he might be dead, but I didn’t kick him off, just in case. So naturally I took an excessive amount of photos during all the action (about 400), which I now have to sort out. Silly me.

And then it was time to catch another couple of trains and head home to bed.

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