Saturday, 3 August 2013

Chalke Valley History Festival

The Chalke Valley History Festival is a week long annual festival. The main part of the festival is the history lectures that are given by prominent historians and other public figure such as Dan Snow, Ian Hyslop, Boris Johnson and Amanda Vickery. However, during the weekend, as well as the lectures, there is also a living history encampment. This is where I fit in, well sort of. The Napoleonic reenactment group that I am a member of was planning on going, but a few days before they changed their mind. :( Most of the members had gone to Waterloo the weekend before and were still recovering!! It was looking like I wouldn't be able to go, which I was rather sad about as I had been really looking forward to this event. Thankfully the day before my sister sweetly offered to drive me down for the day on the Saturday. 

It was a multi-period event so medieval archers mixed with American WWII soldiers  :) Sadly as reenactors we weren't allowed to go to any of the lectures, but we had a great time wandering around.


American WWII food truck

Some fabulous cars.

40s army outdoor kitchen!

One tent in the WWII area was decked out as a  40s homefront kitchen, complete with 40s music playing. The detail was amazing! 

Children's games

My finger seems to have crept into this photo! :)

And this one!!

Ok so am official not the greatest photographer!

There was also a mock up of a war time police station. You can see part of it on the left side of this photo. For some reason I didn't take a photo of the rest, but you can see the fabulous car that was parked outside it.

My beautiful sister. It was her first re-enactment, and she even wanted to dress up! Amazing, as none of my family have ever showed the slightest interest in coming to an event, least of all dressing up. Anyway, none of my decent gowns fit her as she is about 3 sizes smaller then me. However, I did have one dress which I had made ages ago out of an old duvet cover, had only worn once and was always a bit small for me. It was too big for her but looked quite good with the help of a few safety pins and a sash. And she was able to wear my poke bonnet. It was the first bonnet I ever bought, but as my head is so big it does't fit me. It finally got its first proper outing!! :)


A fabulous 1910s plane!

Lovely horses. :)

This is where my knowledge of history gets a bit sketchy as I would call the camp in the next few photos Medieval, but there is a good chance that it wasn't. They looked medieval to me though! I apologise to anyone who portrays this era if it is not medieval!! 

Ok so have just found this photo, mixed up with 40s ones. Am pretty sure that the blue sign said Plantagenets, so am thinking Medieval camp is actually Plantagenet camp. :) 


Me beautiful sister :)

I bumped into a couple of people who I have met at the odd ball. They were sitting outside their friends tent which was amazing. Serious Napoleonic glamping - Double bed, a tent that you could stand up straight in wherever you stood inside it, chest of drawers, writing desk, white linen covered tables and blue and white porcelain tea set. :)

We took a couple of photos with them.

An amazing steam engine that was parked just inside the entrance to the festival. 

I seem to have forgotten to flip this photo. Sorry I can't be bother to re-upload it! :)

It was a boiling hot day, so after wandering around the camps, we sat down and had a cooling drink and a snack in one of the big food tents. 
Whilst eating some people started to do a display of 40s dancing.

At about 2pm there was an airshow of WWII planes

We had a lovely day, but I really wished my group had been there and that I could have stayed the whole weekend. Maybe next year. :)


  1. Looks like lots of fun! What a fabulous representation of various time periods, and all presented with such detail. That's fascinating! Your sister looks lovely, and it's nice that some of your rarely worn clothing pieces were able to be worn! Hopefully she'll be interested in joining you on other future adventures as well.


  2. wow! looks like lots of fun. I will have to keep my eye out for this next year.