42.795 Reenactment Event at Chesters
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Reenactment Event at Chesters
Chesters, 7th May 2012

Another Outing for the Webmaster

Well, all was set for a great day out. Chesters Roman Fort is one of the more spectacular remains from Roman occupation in Britain. The Bathhouse boasts the most substantial ruins along all of Hadrian's Wall. Add to that an event laid on by the Ermine Street Guard and it promises to be quite a spectacle.

I was very pleased in seeing my plans come to fruition, allowing me to get on the train from Carlisle to Hexham and then change onto the Hadrian's Wall Bus to reach the fort; thereby saving myself at least an hour's journey time.

Sadly however, the weather was not cooperative. The wettest April on record was followed by one of the coldest early Mays ever. So not really the ideal setting for an outdoor event involving no trousers....

During the performance of the Roman Army drill I unfortunately had to deal with a gentleman with very greasy hair and dandruff of epidemic proportions who almost always managed to get his head in front of my lens whenever I sought to take a picture. Yet another person immune to subtle hints....

However, I feel I managed to get plenty of incidental pics which captured the flavour of the event. And you'll no doubt notice there are a few legionaries in cloaks. Well, who could blame them.

Once again I've gone out of my way to edit signs of modernity where possible. With traffic these days not being such an issue I also feel more comfortable in providing bigger pictures.

Leaves me only to thank the reenactors of the Ermine Street Guard for their sterling efforts. (Ermine Street Guard)

The temperatures really were perishing at times. Especially keeping in mind the merciless winds that howl around out there at the Roman wall.

So all the modern day legionaries were keen to stay in their cloaks.

Hot food was also a godsend.

I'm always keen to catch them unawares, as I believe this makes for the most natural pictures.

Here are some of the soldiers putting the last touches to their kit.

Deep in conversation...

An interesting bit of experimental archaeology at work here. Notice how two legionaries here are wearing some leather protection across the back of their hand. I suspect it's to protect their hands from banging and chaffing against the buckle of the shield as they wield it.
It's fair to suggest that two thousand years ago men did the very same thing for the very same reason. Sometimes it's by trying things that you stumble across such insights.

Two nice shots from the military display.
Looking at the one below, you can almost hear the centurion snarling at them to get that testudo formation right.

A nice shot of those “serried ranks” advancing.
But is it just me or does this hint at our perhaps not knowing all about the movement of legionaries on the battlefield?
For all the protection afforded the body and head, those legs look awfully vulnerable...

And isn't it just typical....
As the womenfolk slave away over the fire and steaming pots, there's always some lazy bastards doing nothing whatsoever.

Invariably there was going to be some great pics taken in Chesters Fort's famous bathhouse.
Not that those 'photo opportunity' had been laid on for yours truly. I think they had their own photographer with them. But the moment I detected movement in that direction I walked briskly to catch up with them and then piled in regardless.
Who'd have thought Romans would ever suffer the paparazzi treatment...

To the left: Two share a joke.
Above: One wonders what made him so grouchy. Was it the truly horrible weather? Or was he just contemplating whether to skewer that dandruff afflicted buffoon who kept getting in the way of the poor photographer?

Hope you enjoyed the pictures.

The Webmaster


This page was last updated on 24th May 2012.

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