Back on spring bank holiday (27th May), we all went to Arundel Castle, which was pretending to be under siege during the reign of King Richard III.
To compensate for the inevitable bank holiday traffic we set off very early, with the result that there was no traffic (not even just outside Arundel where the dual-carriageway bit of the A27 abruptly ends at half a junction) and we arrived while the town was still half-asleep. So we passed the time with the by-now traditional morning tea from the Edible Sandwich shop, followed by an also by-now traditional potter around Sparks Yard while trying to resist the temptation to buy everything.
Eventually the castle opened the gates and we headed inwards. While we didn't go round the castle proper, we did head up to the original keep via many twisty turny passages (putting me in mind of a cross between Twilight Princess and Hogwarts), with some stunning views.
After that we wandered up to the re-enactment just in time to see the loyal forces of King Richard get routed by the rebels of Henry Tudor. We spent a bit of time pottering around the camps, discovering a mad monk jeweller (with amongst other wares a sterling silver arrow necklace for sale - "good against very small werewolves"). Next we encountered a pair of soldiers clanking around in plate armour, to which allegramente commented wasn't particularly stealthy. "Ah, but that's because we're not in stealth mode" came the reply.
Next was the gardens. I took just a few photos there...
This building is made completely out of wood, as are the fountains and pillars despite them looking more like being built from stone.
Not only is this crown supported on a high-pressure jet of water, it's rotating as well.
Moving on from the gardens, there's a chapel in the castle grounds. Only the one photo from here, of the stained-glass window behind the altar.
After a quick trip back to the restaurant for tea and cakes it was time for the final battle, with the rebels of Henry Tudor once again trying to take Arundel Castle. The re-enactment is apparently unscripted, with the winner decided purely by how well each side fights. This time round, King Richard's loyal forces prevailed and (prompted by the crowd, who didn't believe in taking prisoners) eliminated the rebels. Victory!
Palulay… palu-li-la-la-lulu, parlili… parsnip, parsley, par- partner, partner…
Parley! That’s the one. Parley! Parley!
What to do when the enemy is weakened: get your archers to fire directly at them!