A trip to The Tower is always a worthy adventure – stories of intrigue, treason, being from the wrong side of the family, etc. 2015 found living historians wandering the grounds with Anne Boleyn trying hard to petition her case for marrying good King Henry.
So today found us, and one of the other alumni families here for our 25th anniversary mini reunion headed to the Tower of London. We closed the place down. Again, I will say, it’s great to be able to just spend time in a place and not feel rushed. It was a wonderful day of being with friends, exploring a place visited long ago and enjoying a gorgeous day in London.
We started off with a Yeoman tour, but decided pretty quickly that the crowd was far too large to hear anything clearly and we got those handheld tour guides that were lots of fun to listen to and follow around as we climbed stairs, went down pokey halls, and up along the outer walls. All the while “Anne Boleyn” was getting ready to be crowned on the morrow and her brother was arguing with Cromwell and another Lady-in-waiting (she had a name, I just did not catch it in my chat with her, but she was a Catherine of Aragon and a Catholic. However, she was very politic in her response about following the orders and edict of the king in these tough days with a new head of the church.). Those performing did a lovely job of being in character, but being able to reference
modern ideas as well. I don’t usually try and slip up those doing living history performances, but it is nice to see just how knowledgeable they are. They know their stuff! Historically and modern, but did a really nice job of keeping it all period, which isn’t easy when speaking to a modern crowd.
It can all be overwhelming to be confronted with so much history all in one go, but we all enjoyed listening and sharing our enjoyment of pieces of information we were learning about. Some liked the darker stories of the Tower and others preferred to not hear of the beheadings and such. It was very nicely put together so that the audio was enjoyable for the adults as well as the children in our group – not an easy task to accomplish. There were options to hear more on a subject if so desired, but you could continue on with the tour, or end it at anytime.
Stopping for lunch then pressing onward and into the Tower where the armoury is with Henry VIII’s impressive suit is on display as are other nicely preserved pieces for the lower ranks and horses. There are also pieces of weaponry. You continue to move up and up and then as you are about to enter another room that should fighting methods and coinage you are met by a dragon of impressive size.
It was a long day, but a great day! What’s in store for tomorrow? Wait and see!