Good afternoon! We had a great weekend at Fort Plain for our Road to Culloden living history weekend and the event went very well. The weather turned out to be way better then expected though the foreboding forcast did keep some people away. While we did have rain on Friday night and Saturday it didn't impact our program which was great. In fact, some showers on Saturday afternoon were welcome since it had become quite hot. That dropped the temperature. The skies cleared for the evening and we were treated to a brilliant display of stars during the ceileigh. This was a good reminder to not trust the weather guru's who often forecast doom (kind of like the Saturday end-of-the-world prediction!)and cause some to not come out of fear. The result is those who take that route miss out on a great time!
While the event followed the typical format from the past a new addition to the program this year was a Market Day held on Saturday morning. A large variety of excellent items ranging from women's clothing, to balderics and brass goods were donated to raise money for the National Trust of Scotland. The support was better then expected and a large sum was raised to help out this worthy cause.
The battles each day were less set-piece and more free flowing which made for some interesting interaction. Saturday was an adaption of the battle of High Bridge where a Red Coat patrol happened across a party of Jacobites escorting Prince Charles to Glenfinnan who then attacked. After a spirited encounter the red coats fell back into a defensive postion which was dislodged by the highland charge. The Army of King James swept the field. On Sunday, the scenario was based on the actions that happened after the main battle of Culloden. A wounded Cameron of Lochiel was being escorted from the field by his clan and several other groups who had joined up with them. A red coat contingent, supported by artillery, attacked seeking to capture this prize when they spotted his standard. Complicating the matter was a group of women from the Jacobite camp who had gotten swept up in the general retreat and tried to escape the field of battle when this new attack was launched. It was a chaotic environment! While Lochiel and the ladies were able to safetly withdraw the remnant of the highland force was decimated. A desperate charge of the Hanoverian line by the Clan MacGregor in an attempt to break out ended in disaster as the party was obliterated by the disciplined fire and bayonets which followed.
Thanks to Lord George for organizing. He did a great job of looking after all the details. Three cheers for him! It was again a great site to work with and excellent location for us.
Participating groups from the Army of King James were:
HRH Prince Charles and staff
Elcho's Life Guards
The Atholl Brigade
So thanks to all who came out and made this a memorable weekend for so many. Your efforts and enthusiasm were greatly appreciated. Our next event is at the Niagara Celtic Festival in September. Details will go out in the next month.
and for King James!