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  The Chatter Box : Blathering On
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Re: Battle of Hopton Heath by kazzzz on 20 March 2009 1:42am
Yes Anne, do that and take a pointy stick!

Seriously though, it sounds like a very interesting day. I have always felt that our country is seriously lacking in history, apart from indiginous history of course.
Re: Battle of Hopton Heath by tucsonmike on 20 March 2009 3:18am
Well now, it is due out Mid-2010 fine with me, gives me a year to fix it. Hey, I am being given lots of wiggle room and I will take you up on it.
Re: Battle of Hopton Heath by Spursfan on 20 March 2009 9:17am
Sharpening the pointy stick as we 'speak' !!

Re: Battle of Hopton Heath by geordiegirl on 20 March 2009 2:28pm
Glad you enjoyed the day, Anne!

Interesting point, Kazzz, about Australia having only 'indigenous' history.

I suppose localities have stories....? For instance, the founding of the Melbourne Cup? And you probably know lots more about Melbourne & area?
Re: Battle of Hopton Heath by Spursfan on 20 March 2009 2:56pm
No - it hasn't happened yet Linda (or are you the new Doctor Who? hee hee).

I was just saying the actual day of the battle was 19th March. The ceremony is on Sunday 22nd.

Re: Battle of Hopton Heath by geordiegirl on 22 March 2009 1:28pm
Who hee? (hee?) Oh the AWFUL puns....

(Has David Tennaant left? Who's likely?)
Re: Battle of Hopton Heath by Spursfan on 22 March 2009 3:13pm
There already is a new Dr Who Linda, he begins in 2010.

I am sooo sad because as far as I am concerned David Tennant is the BEST Dr Who ever!!

This is the new one (I am sure he is a GREAT actor but he can't be a patch on DT!!)

Re: Battle of Hopton Heath by Spursfan on 22 March 2009 3:30pm
Right, I have just come back from the ceremony.

I have to report a slight injury - caught on the brambles as I climbed over a stile. A slight loss of blood but your intrepid battlefield reporter continued undetered. :)

At 2 p.m. a cannon fired by the Sealed Knot Society brought the muskets, pikes and drum of said society marching to the monument to the beat of the drum.

The West Midlands Branch Military Historical Society Chairman on behalf of the Hopton Heath Battlefield Memorial Project (and acting as master of ceremonies) recounted what work had been done and why.

Following that the Mayor of Stafford made a speech [one comment here - she held her glasses in her hand and stumbled over her notes Was it vanity?]about the importance of the monument etc etc.

Then the Marquess of Northampton gave a speech about his ancestor the 2nd Duke of Northampton (who led the Royalists and died on the battlefield).

Apparently he was the god son of Elizabeth I and had various connections with royalty, being the Keeper of the Rolls etc. At a time when most aristocratic families 'hedged their bets' by having half their sons on the Royalist side and half on the Parliamentarian, Northampton's sons were all Royalist.

When the time came for the unveiling, Northampton asked Hugo Gell (whose ancestor Sir John Gell had led the Parliamentarians at the battle) to come forward and help him.

The Bishop of Stafford then blessed the stone and also led prayers for the fallen not only on this battlefield (Over 500) but also in other conflicts. He also repeated 2 prayers one said by Charles I (3 mins before his beheading) and the other by Oliver Cromwell (after the battle of Naseby). There was then 1 minute silence to remember the fallen.

Wreaths were then laid by the Sealed Knot Society - one by the Royalists and one by the Parliamentarians - and this was followed by a cannonade and musket volley.

Northampton and Gell then shook hands, 366 years after their ancestors had led opposing sides at the battle, and Gell said 'well done' to the Earl of Northampton. Some wit near me in the crowd said 'Sorry would've been more appropriate!'

It was fairly cold on the heath and the wind was ripping round us but omigod I enjoyed it!! My imagination was running wild and I was there on the battlefield 366 years ago!!

Oh yes - during the first speech, the chairman said the battle was indecisive, but that the town of Stafford was later taken by the Parliamentarians. I noticed that Northampton said in his speech "...366 years after the battle my ancestor won..."!!

In my research I have also found that some historians say it was a royalist victory and others that it was indecisive.

I shall send some photos to Holger.

Re: Battle of Hopton Heath by Spursfan on 22 March 2009 8:19pm
I have now sent some photos to Holger.
Re: Battle of Hopton Heath by kazzzz on 23 March 2009 7:33am
Just saw your FB photos Anne they're very good :)
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