The National Civil War Centre opened in May 2015, following a multi-million pound refurbishment of the town's 'local' museum. The core of the museum buildings is a Tudor Grammer School built by Thomas Magnus around 1529.
Newark held a strategic location during the Civil Wars and was called the 'Gateway to the North.' It sat at the crossroads of the Great North Road, the Fosse Way and the River Trent. As a consequence, it was besieged a number of times during the wars, and held out as a Royalist town, until the King forced its surrender.
This year, the Fortress Newark weekend involved other re-enactment groups around the town again, and HRW were in the museum itself. Occupying the original Tudor school hall in the heart of the museum, we concentrated on the very end of the third siege. As last year, we suggested that due to the Parlimentarian attacks, the School Hall has become a refugee camp with townsfolk thrown together, with the School Master trying to keep life as normal as possible.
Taking the 5th and 6th of May, 1646, we interpreted the townsfolk that had lost their homes, had no fresh food and surrounded but the plague running rife through the town. News breaks through that the King is talking with the Scots, but no news of an army to rescue the town.
The Fortress Newark weekend involved a number of re-enactment groups around the town. HRW were in the museum itself and occupied the original Tudor school hall. The events over the weekend followed through the different seiges of the Civil Wars. We concentrated on the two main ones starting February 1644 and November 1645. We created a scenario where due to the Parlimentarian attacks and the Royalist fortification building, many people lost their homes. The School Hall became a refugee camp with townsfolk from different walks of life thrown together, with the School Master trying to keep life as normal as possible, whilst ensuring that his 'guests' where catered for as much as possible.