I've just been thumbing through my participants application one last time before deciding not
to complete and return it.
Arrival and set up is on the morning of Friday 27th June.
That's a tall order for the English; we're quite northerly and it's still a three and half hour journey on a clear run, and we'd have to catch some peak traffic somewhere, even with an early start.
This early set up is so that we can be "inspected by Health and Safety and meet the event team, and finally to take part in a dull dress rehearsal the same day." [sic]; note the unfortunate misspelling.
The event itself is Saturday 28th, Sunday 29th and Monday 30th June 2014, open 10am to 5pm.
Each event day, the full scale battle re-enactment will take place within the arena at 12 noon, 2pm and 4pm lasting approx. 30 - 40 minutes each. Please be advised the battle re-enactments will be tightly choreographed sequences and therefore we are looking to select professional and highly experienced battle re-enactment groups who will be able to prepare for battle for months in advance and have access to all the necessary authentic equipment and costumes. We will work with re-enactment group captains to ensure that full kits lists are to the required standards. This is a physically demanding role and we require commitment from you from the point of selection.
Comfortingly "There is no fee to participate in the battle re-enactment."
For those taking part, we will provide you with the following;
- a dedicated point of contact for instruction on battle choreography and content
- a camping pitch on site with access to toilets and running water
- access passes for re-enactors participating over the weekend
- a parking space adjacent to the site (please note parking spaces are limited and may be restricted)
- a set fee to cover travelling expenses
I'm still discouraged by the overall tone:
The specially created festival arena will feature a programme packed with music, Scottish food &
drink, crafts, literature and outdoor activities all set in the beautiful surroundings of the memorial park.
Alongside the biggest Battle of Bannockburn re-enactment ever seen in Scotland, an array of themed villages will be
constructed each presenting the sights, sounds and atmosphere of medieval and modern Scotland. There will be three
opportunities to watch the re-enactment each day so that everyone can see and enjoy all of the performance stages and the theatre tents.
The bespoke arena will include a main contemporary music stage, Scottish literature and traditional music in ‘Storyville’, tastings and food demonstrations in the ‘Land of Food and Drink’ featuring quality Scottish produce and real ales, hands-on bush craft, wildlife and outdoor activities in our ‘Natural World Village’, along with a children’s programme, a chance to participate in sports like archery and "have a go" highland games and an opportunity to trace Scottish roots for families returning to Scotland.
This isn't so much an anniversary re-enactment of the battle, as a festival of Scottishness; and I am unsure about exactly what the battle of "tightly choreographed sequences" might be like to take part in.
With a minimum of two days off work; realistically three, for "a set fee to cover travelling expenses", that seems like might have quite a large personal cost for something I don't know if I'll enjoy.
Anyway, best of luck to them; I'm sure it will be a spectacle.