Thursday, 29 January 2009

A Grand Alliance

The late 1980s was a fertile time in the UK for the late 17th century or so it seemed. 1985 saw numerous Sedgemoor events and Devereux's my regiment in the English Civil War Society reenacted various skirmishes of the Glorious Revolution at places like Wincanton and Littlecote in 1988. Killiekrankie followed in 89. The National Army Museum staged an exhibition in 88 with interpreters recreating William III's army. Most of the wargames figures for the period were released at that time and there were new books on the subject such as the Louis XIV's army Osprey - in short it seemed as if this period was beginning to get momentum.
In the light of this we had a meeting - me Simon Frame and David Wilton and came up with the idea of The Grand Alliance - an international society of tercentenary groups that could come together for the League of Augsburg anniversaries through to the Marlburian events. Of course this was all before the internet and there wasn't any reenactment magazines in those days - there was no way of knowing who was out there in Europe - how were we to know that outside of the UK there was no real late 17th century scene at that time. We did go as far as trying to get an event at Namur for the siege there but things floundered for a while as there was no demand for 300th events until Blenheim came along in 2004. Nowadays there is no need for umbrella organisations as communications have meant that with the internet we can all keep up without constantly scouting for rumours of other reenactment societies.

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