The Hay History Festival Weekend

The Hay History Festioval Weekend created 11103105_10153325532279900_6059416392737523987_o - HayScreen Shot 2015-09-23 at 20.49.43 hay 2a range of exciting and engaging activities all with the Theme of Agincourt!

The weekend was a huge success with over 2,225 people taking part and attending events.

The four day festival is a lesson on how Agincourt and medieval history can excite and galvanise a town. Events included:

• Local school children making paper arrows as they learnt about the Battle .

• Visitors took part in a Medieval walk around Hay

• Poet Emma Beynon lead a workshop that introduced school children to the Battle then worked on thinking of words that would relate to the archers and how they felt. The pupils were passed round arrows as examples and were shown the costume for an archer along with a long bow. They were then split into group and asked to watch some clips from the Kenneth Branagh Henry V. Whilst watching they were asked to look out for specific things like: sounds, objects, atmosphere, people etc. Towards the end of the
• workshop the pupils were then encouraged to write poetry
• These poems were then displayed during the weekend in Hay Castle.

• The Freemen of Gwent set up camp on Friday night. Their camp consisted of 5 tents including armoured knight, fletcher, Horton Family tent and kitchen. They were also joined by local wood turner – Lewis Goldwater. The campsite served allowed visitors to wander round and meet the reenactors and also to handle and ask questions about the objects that they had on display in their tents.

• Steve Evans visited from Tintern where he is resident scrivener at Tintern Abbey.
• He had produced several documents specifically for the festival, including a copy of the Brecon Indenture, complete with wax seal. He spent the day in the Castle in costume talking to visitors about his craft and what life would entail as a scrivener.

• Resident medievalist, Lesley Arrowsmith, wandered around the Castle in costume with her basket of weaving materials showing visitors her craft and tools. Lesley also loaned her long bow and arrows for the schools workshops.

• Hay Castle Trust provided shield and sword blanks for children to embellish with gems and decorate with stencils and pens. The blanks were accompanied by worksheets explaining the uses and meanings of shields and crests within heraldry, with examples of those pertaining to the de Braose and de Bohun families who were Lords of the Manor of Hay.

• Two stuntmen from the Cavalry of Heroes performed a costumed fight on the main lawn.

• Hay Theatre Company rehearsed their shortened version of Henry V with added humour. They ran two drama workshops during the morning on the terrace lawns at the front of Hay Castle for children.

• The performance began on the back lawns with singing by the Village Quire and dancing by Morris dancers. The dancers then led the audience through the Castle and onto the terraces where they could find seating for the play. The backdrop for the play was thus the castle, with the Sea of Arrows hanging prominently from the top windows.

• The weekend was finished off with an Illustrated talk by Prof. Ann Curry – The Battle of Agincourt.