Do the preparation task first. Then, watch the video and do the exercises. Remember you can read the transcript at any time.
Amandeep: The English countryside: a great place to find peace and quiet … somewhere to enjoy the scenery … and enjoy nature and fresh air … and famous also for the dramatic battles of the past.
Herald: By the grace of God, King of England, Scotland, I call on all you people of Corfe Castle to send into this garrison now all your weapons.
Soldiers: God save the King!
Amandeep: This is Corfe Castle in the south of England, where today people are turning back the clock by more than 350 years to the time of the English Civil War.
The English Civil War was the last war to be fought on English soil. King Charles I was fighting for his throne. His supporters were called the Royalists. They were fighting against the Parliamentarians, who didn’t want the King to be in charge. And who won? Well, keep watching to find out! But why do these members of the English Civil War Society come here?
Society member 1: Meeting up with old friends, having a good time and visiting places that probably I wouldn’t go to normally.
Society member 2: Bringing history alive for the general public.
Society member 3: Well, I come as part of a family. We’ve got three young children and they love the whole atmosphere.
Amandeep: I got the chance to go into the Royalist camp. Stephen Burden plays the part of a Royalist officer.
Stephen, tell me a little bit about what you’re wearing today.
Stephen: My clothes show that I’m a gentleman because they’re very high-status. I wear gloves to protect my hands and I’m also carrying many weapons. I’ve got my sword here, I have my pistol and if all else fails I have a dagger to finish people off with. And also we have various things, as you can see in here, including real coins of the period. Do have a look at one. Congratulations! This person takes the King’s shilling! We have a new recruit!
Sergeant, take this person, take them and get some decent clothes on them. We’re going to make a soldier out of them.
Sergeant: Make way for the new recruit! Make way!
Amandeep: And now I feel like I really have stepped back in time.
The Battle of Corfe Castle was a real event which took place here over three centuries ago. Time for me to join the action!
The muskets use real gunpowder and are incredibly loud. Eventually, the castle falls to the control of the Parliamentarians.
That was so much fun, being involved actually in the action! Our side was beaten, but, boy, was that a really good experience!
Remember I said I’ll tell you what happened in the English Civil War? The Royalists lost the war and the King lost his head … literally. Eleven years later, his son regained the throne and Britain has had a royal family ever since. When you look, history is all around us.
Do you think this is a good way to learn about history? Why or why not?