A parade fit for a king

The Priory Green Bridlington Dedication event to King Henry 5th, along with the Priory Fair
The Priory Green Bridlington Dedication event to King Henry 5th, along with the Priory Fair

It is 600 years since Henry V defeated the French at the Battle of Agincourt. Before and after the battle he visited the shrine of St John of Bridlington, his patron saint to seek his blessing and to give thanks for the victory.

In celebration of this, the Priory hosted the Medieval Summer Fayre on the Church Green on Saturday 20 June.

Parade from the Bayle Gate to the Priory

Parade from the Bayle Gate to the Priory

Stephen Carvill was commissioned in 2013, as part of the Priory 900 celebrations, to design and carve a shrine to mark the place where the original shrine is believed to be. The carved stone was installed in May 2015 and it was decided to bless the new shrine at the Medieval Summer Fayre.

Churchwarden Anthony Halford said: “With the 600th anniversary of the battle of Agincourt, it seemed appropriate that as Henry V had thanked St John for his victory in 1421, his spirit should visit the shrine 600 years later to commemorate that victory.”

Ron Broadbent was the spirit of Henry V, a part he had played in Priory Visions in 2013.

A procession was organised and an advert ‘a horse a horse my kingdom for a horse’ in the church magazine for a charger.

The Priory Green Bridlington Dedication event to King Henry 5th, along with the Priory Fair

The Priory Green Bridlington Dedication event to King Henry 5th, along with the Priory Fair

Anthony said: “How lucky we were that Duke, a fine baroque Friesian, very similar to the war like chargers of Agincourt, was available. Nesta Wilson made him a wonderful coat and reins so he looked as if he had come from a medieval jousting tournament.”

A break in the weather in the early afternoon resulted in the ATC drummers leading the procession. Children held banners made by Burlington Infant and Juniors as the rector in a magnificent cope led the way followed by Augustinian canons and others in mediaeval dress.

Duke was somewhat spooked by the noise but everyone else arrived at the shrine. Stephen Carvill, his friend who had helped him and his mother were also present.

The rector read out prayers blessing the stone and asking St John to intercede for us, as he had for pilgrims throughout the last 600 years. Henry V knelt at the shrine to give thanks for all the blessings God had given him.

Air Training Corps Drummers

Air Training Corps Drummers

The procession returned to the hubbub of the Fayre.

Anthony said: “The Makara Morris dancers contributing a wonderful link with our medieval forebears. The Excelsior Brass Band entertaining those in the Priory Church as the stall holders raised an encouraging £2,000 for the church. Thank you to everyone who turned up for making the event so special.”

David Mooney at the Bayle Gate

David Mooney at the Bayle Gate

Ron Bradbent as King Henry the 5th

Ron Bradbent as King Henry the 5th

Violet Heseltine 9

Violet Heseltine 9