The Tudor Roses

The Tudor Roses

The Rose Blog

Sudeley Castle Tudor Fun Day Round 2 - May Day Bank Holiday

Last Bank Holiday weekend (7th May '12) marked another outing of the Tudor Roses at Sudeley Castle. It was the second of the Castle’s ‘Tudor fun days’; all part of a summer of celebrations marking the quincentenary of the birth of Katherine Parr in 1512.


Clearly, it was a day to draw upon the inherited resilience of our Anglo-Saxon forefathers whose hardy blood surely ran through our veins; for the weather was set to be of the worst variety, biting cold whipping up prodigious amounts of rain. Whilst I was looking forward to the revels (and the chance to wear my new gown of purple taffeta), I had indeed girded my loins in anticipation of a miserable day, entertaining a mere handful of the most die-hard visitors, armed only with a burning passion for my ghostly Tudor ancestors, and my hearty fondness for my new found friends; Emma, Katherine and Mike (alias Good King Hal). Sadly, Erica and the one of the newest Roses, Francesca, were not able to join us.

Lady Katherine, Lady Emma & Lady Sarah with our favourite Henry VIII - Good King Hal


But if I imagined, a long, wretched day of being frozen to the bone, huddling in doorways and confined indoors on our own, then I could not have been more wrong; the great British determination to enjoy a bank holiday, come what may, was out in force. 400 visitors in total were entertained by the sheer beauty and grace of us Roses, the witty banter of Good King Hal, (who rather cheekily lent me his knee to sit on alongside some bawdy jokes), the fantastic ‘Waytes and Measures’ who serenaded us as we feasted in the Great Hall (OK, the cafeteria but a girl can dream, right?) and the wonderful court jester who wowed us with his circus skills.


Yes, it was cold and yes, we got wet, including the hem of my gown which ended up muddy and soaked through; but we all had a blast. Princess Kara, replete in her own princely dress, was surely the guest of the day for me, insisting that I held her lovely 6 week old brother, Luke, of whom clearly she was very proud. Many photos were taken, Katherine and I’s Tudor knowledge tested (Katherine Parr was married to Henry, right? LOL!), and as ever, I adored spending the day flouncing around in dresses that make you feel so incredibly graceful and full of feminine guile’s. I cannot help but love the way the bodice pushes everything in the right direction – waist in, chest up! All very well, as long as you don’t need to breathe, eat too much or bend over. 

The Tudor Roses with the Princess Kara and Good King Hal being his serious-self as ever!

We were also joined by Zarrina in her purple & gold gown.


So what did I learn; I understood why Tudors had long galleries to walk in during inclement weather (fabrics too expensive to get dirty), but if you do have to go out, always take a wiling gentleman along to carry your train (thanks Darren!); that it is impossible to reach over too far to pour yourself a cup of tea when laced tightly into a bodice and finally, that no matter what the weather, the British will be there come rain or shine! In the words of a certain King Henry VIII, ‘pastime with good company, I love and shall, until I die’. The company was fabulous and the pastime most excellent. And so now to get ready for jousting at Hedingham Castle on 3rd/ 4th June. I’ve been looking for a knight in shining armour for a while...wonder if I’ll find him there!

Lady Sarah - The Tudor Roses


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