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Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Wed Mar 05, 2014 8:29 pm
by guthrie
I would like to handle the originals in the Burrell collection, but I expect they are too weak to be swung around. Rather blade heavy loooking anyway. Maybe you have a replica?

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Wed Mar 05, 2014 8:54 pm
by Biro
Mark, that was terrible!

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Wed Mar 05, 2014 9:43 pm
by Ayliffe's Steve
guthrie wrote:Steve - lots of us can be entertaining. It's just that it is nice if it's also somewhat accurate in its portrayal of the past.


So are they not accurate?

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Mon Mar 10, 2014 3:41 pm
by DeMaule
Bannockburn seems like an uneven event, qualitywise, an judging from this thread it has been the previous times too. But the name alone, and anniversary, is big enough to attract some people. I don't know about the continental group, but I know that there will be both Swedish, Danish and Norwegian reenactment groups coming. We would have liked the event to be very authentic, but I guess it will be a little bit of everything. But on the other hand, the sheer distance is going to be enough to make this quite an adventure... :P

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Wed Mar 19, 2014 11:01 pm
by JG Elmslie
A little earlier today, on seeing a fairly dire photo of "King Edward" and "Robert the Bruce" produced by Clanranald, a little imp of the perverse made me comment on it, pointing out that for supposedly portraying early 14th C nobility, both people were wearing completely inaccurate knee-length boots and trousers, with no chausses, and no poleyns.

(I decided that pointing out other errors in the outfits, like that "Edward's" couters with rondels are a style that's not seen till about 1340 in effigies, or any of the similar details would be overkill)

The comment got deleted within a few hours and I was blocked from any future comments. Sort of shows the complete lack of interest Clanranald have in any historic accuracy.
I fear it will be a wangfest of the worst possible sort.

--

Guthrie, I've been planning to get my rotten hands on those XIIIa's in the Burrell for a while, to take measurements and get details of some of the inlays (last time I was meant to, it had to be scrapped at the last moment due to a shortage of assistants.), If you'd like to be there for a study of them, want me to let you know when I finally arrange with Ralph to get them out the cabinet, and you can join us?

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Thu Mar 20, 2014 2:17 pm
by guthrie
James, yes, I'd love to, although it all depends on time and date etc. I might know one or two others who would be interested, how many can they accomodate?

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Thu Mar 20, 2014 2:26 pm
by Mark Griffin
That would be a trip worth going to. Interested in swords? then get Toby or Ralph to open some cases. Go handle the real thing, don't look at books or wave blunt stuff around. It ain't the same!

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Thu Mar 20, 2014 6:15 pm
by guthrie
Mark Griffin wrote:That would be a trip worth going to. Interested in swords? then get Toby or Ralph to open some cases. Go handle the real thing, don't look at books or wave blunt stuff around. It ain't the same!

Oh yes, I still recall the handling opportunity at the Royal Armouries in Leeds one SWASH a few years ago.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Fri Mar 21, 2014 4:22 pm
by Dave B
guthrie wrote:Oh yes, I still recall the handling opportunity at the Royal Armouries in Leeds one SWASH a few years ago.


I did a couple of those. The thing that sticks with me was that I'd spent years telling people how our reenactment swords were, if anything, heavier than the real things because of the thick blunt edges, and then being given two genuine medieval swords to handle, one of which had heavier, more crowbarlike balance than a 90's reenctment truck leafspring. Then again the 18thC courtsword was lighter and livelier than a modern Epee. And as for putting on white gloves and turning the pages of Thibault and MS I33....

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Fri Mar 21, 2014 5:28 pm
by Fox
Dave B wrote:I did a couple of those. The thing that sticks with me was that I'd spent years telling people how our reenactment swords were, if anything, heavier than the real things because of the thick blunt edges, and then being given two genuine medieval swords to handle, one of which had heavier, more crowbarlike balance than a 90's reenctment truck leafspring.

It's very much the same with armour and helmets; people forget that it's usually the really good stuff that gets displayed and handled.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Sat Jun 28, 2014 11:31 pm
by guthrie
Well, that's one day done, with an irritating amount of rain. Photos etc to come later.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Mon Jun 30, 2014 3:08 pm
by Dave B

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Mon Jun 30, 2014 10:01 pm
by guthrie
OKay, so, Bannockburn. Basically, it was your normal sort of event. That's it. The ultimate shame of it all is that it was just another event. Various people put lots of hard work into it, but at the end of the day there were a bit over 100 on the field, some horses, some encampments showing LH stuff - essentially nothing new was done, nothing spectacular etc. It failed to live up to the hype.
Of course that said there were no bad accidents that I heard of, the public enjoyed themselves, as they usually do.

What was frustrating was the mix of good and bad. There was good clothing and equipment, and bad clothing and equipment, some potentially dangerous- a maille coif won't give the same protection as a helmet, and they certainly didn't wear them without helmets back then. The arena was I think a bit small to have horses running round, and, potentially problematically, the ropes were only about 4ft apart and the public often got between them for a closer view. In that respect it was good that there weren't the number promised in the PR, which even as late as Sunday morning was claiming 300 costumed people there; instead I estimate about 150. Some good groups from Germany, Portugal, Sweden, Luxembourg provided much of the living history encampment.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Mon Jun 30, 2014 10:11 pm
by Mark Griffin
Oh good, stargazing chairs...

Shame, but it was always going to be a camel rather than a thoroughbred stallion. Only saw a few secs on the news sources, whereas the armed forces thing got a lot more coverage.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Mon Jun 30, 2014 10:14 pm
by guthrie
It has been clear since last year that Unique events know little to nothing about organising re-enactments, which is why that part was left to Clanranald. The event as a whole was moderately well run, but not well run, if you see what i mean. A lot of it, like security and access worked well. The staff I spoke to were helpful, but somehow in various ways, a lot of the public had part of a bad time. Bins were fine, toilets etc, but to list the issues which Unique or others need to learn from for the future:
massive queues for the food on site left a lot of disgruntled and hungry people.
Fewer stalls in the farmers market tent than I've seen in my local town farmers market, which is a rather small farmers market; there should have been 20 or 30 such stalls, I only saw about 7 or 8, not showcasing enough.
The beer tent was too small, which is odd considering this is scotland, yet the clan/ family tent setup was good and permitted people to shelter from the rain.
Ticketing was just done wrongly. People could only collect them from a small number of places or on the day, meaning massive queues for it on the day or making a separate journey some other time to collect them. All of which adds to the expense and irritation.
Finally, the access to the stands for the battle just didn't work so well. The first one had massive queues; it seems to have been ticketed which added to the bureacracy and complexity. So after complaints from people waiting nearly an hour just to get to stand and watch the battle, they changed it to barricade off the entire 1314 area just before and during the battle. THis had two bad consequences. Firstly the living history stuff was almost deserted for a disturbingly large time, because people were either watching the battle or queueing outside the area. Secondly, even more queueing irritated more of the public. Once in they enjoyed themselves, but all the waiting and not being told things about what was happening and why, caused problems. IN terms of concentration of people, the area used outside the arena could certainly take them all.


And I have to say that when I raised a point about an oddly dressed person heading off onto the battlefield with Malin, she responded, investigated and checked who it was and whether they should be there. That side of it worked well enough, there didn't seem to be numpties getting onto the field as has been attempted before at Bannockburn. Scott McMasters narration improved throughout the weekend with practise, and had a good balance between fact and crowd pleasing. Some thought had gone into making the battle like the 2 days of the original.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Mon Jun 30, 2014 10:16 pm
by guthrie
Mark Griffin wrote:Oh good, stargazing chairs...

Shame, but it was always going to be a camel rather than a thoroughbred stallion. Only saw a few secs on the news sources, whereas the armed forces thing got a lot more coverage.

Yes indeed, but note the butter churn on the table behind - a fair number of GDFB helmets, regrettably as many ARP helmets were in view. And some trousers.

THat just goes to show that Unionist propaganda is indeed everywhere - the Hootsmon has slanted all their articles to make Bannockburn look bad, but big up the AFD. Oddly enough photographs taken from Stirling castle show at most a few thousand attending it, not the 35k claimed by the MOD; since it wasn't a ticketed event we've no way of adding it all up, but the photographs clearly show fewer than I have seen at many English or other events.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Mon Jun 30, 2014 10:23 pm
by guthrie
Camel is perhaps a bit much, but with different, more experienced organisers and so on, it could have been very good, instead of merely average. There were good things and bad things. They had a tent for Edward II, oddly enough it had bamboo poles... The accoutrements in it were generic filmic medieval, not accurately historic, except the bed. The woman in charge of it when the battle was on knew a fair bit of history but had a naff costume, and there were other examples of people being enthusiastic or knowing about the history, but simply not representing it at all.

I of course was wearing my madder dyed 2/1 twill supertunic and using a maple drinking bowl, and had new boots based on finds from Perth from the 13/14th centuries. Thus I claim the title of most authentically dressed man in the field.

The following photo shows the archers. Only one was properly dressed, but I forgot to find out which group they were with.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Tue Jul 01, 2014 10:51 am
by guthrie

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Tue Jul 01, 2014 2:15 pm
by Biro
Not as bad as I expected..

But there's still the big bugbear I have for this period.. Way too many in surcotes (and sometimes bits of plate) but without any mail!

Sounds like it was way off the promotional hype though in terms of numbers.. I guess our curiosity of where they would get the numbers from was justified, and I'm still a bit bemused as to why not many(if any) English groups were approached..

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Tue Jul 01, 2014 3:10 pm
by Tod
Just go though those BBC pictures. I hoped it would be better than this. :( Good luck to all the 14th century re-enactors who will now have to try and explain all their kit and what they do in detail to the thousands that now think that what they saw this week end was even close to what they had and did then.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Tue Jul 01, 2014 3:30 pm
by guthrie
It would be nice to have a 14th century event - there's a drought of events in Scotland. Still quite a few small scale local ones, but not a lot of bigger national ones.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Tue Jul 01, 2014 9:24 pm
by Earl Mortimer
Well to be devils advocate the groups who have posted so far here, Facebook etc have not gone that extra mile either in up grading there kit to meet 1314 period.

That's what I'm seeing and that's my thoughts.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Tue Jul 01, 2014 9:26 pm
by guthrie
Some people did upgrade bits and pieces, but the overall effect was lacking.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Tue Jul 01, 2014 9:35 pm
by Mark Griffin
I cant see any groups posting on here though.... apart fro Biro and whilst I'm sure he's not officially speaking for his group, they do have pretty high standards from what I see.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Tue Jul 01, 2014 9:40 pm
by guthrie
Certainly no group represented on this page attended the event. I think we've answered Ayliffe's Steve's question well enough - no, they weren't particularly authentic. The best point though was that nobody was wearing a plaid, which, sad to say, represents an improvement.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Tue Jul 01, 2014 9:55 pm
by Mark Griffin
What? No Clan McHalfords? Shame. Plenty of rigger boots though I hope or the atmosphere would have been completely lacking.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Tue Jul 01, 2014 10:09 pm
by guthrie
There were a couple of pairs in evidence, and some suspicious coverings/ leggings. It was an improvement on some events, but still woefully short of what it could have been. AS you can see from the photos, lots of dodgy weird leather jackets of no historical provenance. Still addictions to leather lower arm vambraces and 15th century plate arms and legs though.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 10:28 pm
by Fian
I'm quite new to re-enacting, only a couple of years and our group was there for this with a large contingent of individuals from some of the other Scottish groups that didn't attend as a group. It was certainly the biggest event I've done (I know things like Tewksbury are an awful lot bigger), but I think one of the biggest issues was that most of the groups that ended up turning up don't do that period of history, there was some German vikings in there and an awful lot of stuff I associate with later history and an awful lot that even I know has no place in history.

Overall though I think it was okay, I enjoyed myself, it was great making new friends and hearing stories from other groups in all that waiting time. The crowds certainly seemed to enjoy it despite them not being the typical mop's we get at our other shows, a couple of non re-enactor friends and work colleagues were there and thought it looked great so from that point of view they pulled it off. I wish it had been bigger, and I know the rep of the organisers had a lot to do with why it wasn't bigger but alas that was where NTS went with it.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 11:48 pm
by guthrie
I do think they would have struggled to safely put more people into the arena that was supplied though. In that respect, lower numbers was okay.

Re: Bannockburn 2014

Posted: Thu Jul 03, 2014 9:08 am
by Fox
guthrie wrote:I do think they would have struggled to safely put more people into the arena that was supplied though. In that respect, lower numbers was okay.

Presumably they had a reasonable estimate of how many were actually attending as the weekend approached, and planned the size of the arena accordingly; nothing worse than arena which dwarfs the participants.
[perhaps I'm being over generous]