Kentwell News

 


Kentwell Hall is best known for its Re-Creations of 16th C. domestic life, a genre which it started in 1979 and for which it has remained the leader and enjoys a reputation which has stretched well beyond these shores. These events are based upon trying to re-create not merely the dress of the 16th C. but also the speech pattern and activities of the time against a perfect 16th C. setting of this moated Tudor mansion.

In 1995 Kentwell put on its first 1940's Event to celebrate the 50th anniversary of VE Day. This made use of the fact that Kentwell was requisitioned during WWII and used as a Transit Camp. The House was used for the small permanent garrison while the troops in transit camped in the Park in front of the House and Kentwell's three-quarter mile ancient Lime Avenue drive was used as a tank park. With the assistance of military re-enactors, Kentwell created what it claimed (and none disputed) was the biggest and best of the VE Day commemorative Events. This was no mere static event but some 400 people re-created what Kentwell might have been like and how it functioned in May 1945. The regret of most people taking part was that the event only lasted three days by the end of which many of those taking part were just beginning to get into the swing of things.

Kentwell has now decided to attempt another major 1940's event and has decided to go for a week in October 2001, provisionally set for 6th to 14th October. Once again the theme will be to re-create the Transit camp of the year chosen. This will involve personating the family who lived at the House throughout the War, their staff and retainers and other civilians, as well as the permanent garrison based in the House who ran the Camp and units who were temporarily camped in the park waiting for their next posting.

Kentwell will be looking to run the Transit Camp as it might have been run with all units being kept occupied and active by drill, PT, Instruction, Shooting on the range, training on the assault course, exercises etc., etc.. All of these activities will be conducted under trained Instructors so that the experience for those taking part will be as near to being in an army camp as re-creators can manage. There will also be a NAAFI (operating with .s.d.), a chapel and all other appendages of a camp.

Obviously, as well as military personnel Kentwell will be seeking people who have their own appropriate equipment and heavy vehicles and heavy weaponry.

Persons taking part will in the main be chosen from those best able and prepared to fit into the outline of the event, which Kentwell will create. In order to give interested re-enactors some idea of what a Kentwell event is all about and to lay necessary groundwork for the 2001 Event, Kentwell is holding a small 2 day event this October (on Saturday 30th and Sunday 31st) and a four day event in October 2000 from Saturday 14th to Tuesday 17th. We will also hold a 'Landgirls on the Farm' weekend on Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th April and will be seeking civilians to represent the Womans Land Army, WVS, LDV / Home Guard, etc, and also to be 'agricultural' civvies - horsemen, farm labourers etc.

Individuals or groups wishing to take part this October are invited to contact Alex Scott, Kentwell's 1940 Event Co-Ordinator. This October's Event being on a very small scale, a number of the activities described above will not be set up or functioning. What groups or individuals can do may be defined be their own experience and equipment. However, groups or individuals that take part this year and next year and have an appropriate contribution to make should be in a privileged position when invitations for the Great Event in 2001 are being sent out.

For further information: contact Alex Scott or Dawn Champion on telephone number 01787 310 207.

Email: info@kentwell.co.uk
Telephone: 01787 310 207
Facsimile:   01787 379 318

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