The usual background white noise of car engines and low-flying aircraft was interrupted by musket and cannon fire today as historical re-enactors refought the 1643 Battle Of Tonbridge.
To be honest, knowing next to nothing about the English Civil War, I'd never even realised there had been a clash between the Roundheads and Royalists here.
Turns out our castle, at that time, was the property of Parliamentarian tax collector Mr Thomas Weller, who was charged by Parliament on July 19 with investigating disturbances up near Sevenoaks.
This turned out to be 4,000 Royalist rebels who were heading to Tonbridge to cause trouble.
The rebels ran amok in town until a force of 2,000 Roundheads arrived from London to bolster Weller's men on July 24, and together they crushed the Royalist uprising.
|The two-day, riverside, food market - running concurrently with the historical re-enactment|
As it happened today, although Rachel, Alice, and I spent a long time in town - lunch outdoors at our favourite café (Beyond The Grounds), a haircut for yours truly, a saunter through the riverside food market - we never actually saw any of the fighting that was being re-enacted.
It simply didn't match up with our timetable.
But no worries, we still got to meander around the living history tents in the castle grounds, check out the weaponry, and watch a bit of the pike and musket drill display by Sir Marmaduke Rawdon’s Regiment of Foote.
It was probably for the best, because Alice wasn't at all happy about the cannons and muskets (even in our garden this morning she was a bit confused hearing the distant cannon fire).
The combination of this new re-enactment on the town's calendar with the food fair by the river (we got cookies and some sweet chilli relish), and the Goldilocks weather (neither too hot or too cold, but just right - with a cool refreshing breeze) just further encapsulated why Rachel and I love living in Tonbridge.
|Really loved the demonstration of an early printing press.|