Thaxted returns to 1642!

THOUSANDS of visitors travelled back in time for a living history weekend in Thaxted.

THOUSANDS of visitors travelled back in time for a living history weekend in Thaxted.

The event returned to the village for the third time and members of the English Civil War Society turned out to give visitors a glimpse of what life would have been like in 1642. Organisers hailed it a “great success”.

Mike Collins, who sits on the Thaxted Parish Council tourism committee, said: “We had a constant flow of visitors, some coming back for a second day and a couple who said they had come from New Zealand for the occasion.

“On the Saturday there was a wedding in the church – unrelated to our event – but the bride and groom were given a 17th century guard of honour and a two cannon salute.

“Both the Civil War participants and the parish council were delighted by how enthusiastic the visitors were. It was a great success.”

The town around the church was a buzzing with activity, from the cooks preparing meals to the soldiers mounting guard on important sites like the restaurants and pubs.

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The two cannons were a resounding attraction, with repeated firings.

The apothecary and herbalist were based around the village and there were various craft demonstrations.

In the churchyard, people could visit the encampment kitchen and also find out about crime and punishment.

A barber-surgeon, set up shop in Mill End, proved popular with visitors. There were numerous living history displays, and drill and swords schools for youngsters in Windmill Field.

There was also the chance for visitors to vote for the side they supported: the Parliamentarians or Royalists.

“We had about 500 votes and the King was comfortably in front by the end of the Sunday and was declared the winner,” said Cllr Collins. “The Parliamentary soldiers were then marched out of the town.”