Published: 06/08/2015 15:16 - Updated: 11/08/2015 17:50

Celebration of the Centuries gets royal seal of approval

A Supermarine Spitfire will help Fort George mark the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain.
A Supermarine Spitfire will help Fort George mark the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain.

A VISIT to Fort George could bring you face to face with royalty this weekend.

For the return of Historic Scotland’s annual Celebration of the Centuries event, some of the historical characters have broken free from the presentations and encampments and will be wandering the grounds the Georgian fortress just outside Adersier to answer questions.

They include Mary of Guise, who celebrates her 500th birthday this year, the wife of James V and mother of Mary Queen of Scots.

More humble characters roaming the grounds include the Queen’s lady-in-waiting, Mistress Janet Sinclair; Private Murray, keeping a watchful eye out for French invaders; and Ethel the suffragette, who will be drumming up support for votes for women.

Mary of Guise is not alone in celebrating a significant anniversary at Fort George this weekend.

Special attention will also be given to the bicentenary of Waterloo, with the help of Napoleonic re-enactment group the 94th Regiment of Foot, the Scottish contribution to the Battle of Loos in 1915, and the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain with the return of a thrilling display by a Supermarine Spitfire.

In total over 250 performers will attend the award-winning event which will sweep through two millennia of Scottish history from Picts and Romans to the two World Wars, via the Viking, Medieval, Renaissance, Reformation and Jacobite eras.

Along with displays in the main arena, the public can get up close to the living history displays in the bustling encampments, or even have a dance to a swing band in 1940s zone.

Other attractions include a chance to try the art of calligraphy with a quill pen, discover the ingredients used in medieval cooking and join the Duke of Wellington’s soldiers as they are put through their drills.

Celebration of the Centuries will take place on Saturday and Sunday from 11am to 5pm.

Tickets to this event can be bought on the day as well as in advance and are priced at £12 for adults, £9.50 for concessions, £7.20 for children (aged 5 to 15 years old) with under-fives going free.

Family tickets are also available.

A 10 per cent discount is available when tickets are purchased online in advance This popular event is free for Historic Scotland Members.

Groups taking part this year are:

• 94th Regiment of Foot (Napoleonic Wars)

• 29th Field Kitchen (authentic World War I and II catering)

• Alba Adventure Company (Jacobite Rising)

• Carrick 800 (multi-period re-enactment society)

• Company of St Margaret (Medieval)

• Erskine’s Regiment, First Captain’s Company (Covenanters)

• Hayden Easy and Gillie Jones (blacksmith)

• Living History Scotland (multi-period re-enactment society)

• Medieval Realm

• Music Through The Ages

• Propshop

• Rusty Bodkins (medieval archery and living history)

• Strathblane Falconry

• The Swing Sensation and The Swing Dancers (1940s style big band and dancers)

• The Antonine Guard (Roman)

• The Dark Side of History (the chief torturer’s introduction to the tools of his trade)

• The Desert Rats (World War II in the Western Desert)

• The Earl of Loudoun’s Regiment of Foote (Covenanters)

• The Gordon Highlanders 1914-18

• The Historic Saltire Society (Medieval)

• The Rhynie Wifies (Iron Age)

• The Scottish Home Front Living History Society (World War II Britain)

• Victory in Europe Re-enactment Association (World War II)

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