The county of Huntingdonshire ceased to exist in 1971, this brought to an end a civic power which had existed as earldom, borough and finally county for over 1000 years. During its millenia of existence Huntingdonshire has spawned inventors, scientists, businessmen, statesmen an assassin and the only non-monarchical head of state in British history. It was with this depth of history in mind, and its under-appreciation, that the Huntingdonshire History Festival was born.
The festival will be opening on Saturday June 30th with an all day reenactment display and living history camp provided by Pickering regiments of the Sealed Knot. They will be portraying Huntingdon shortly after the occupation of the town by Charles I in 1645. Throughout the month 30+ shops, cafes, pubs and offices will be displaying assorted exhibitions on local history with leaflets to guide visitors between venues, there will also be a host of other activities running as outlined below. All ticketed events will have tickets available via Eventbrite
Working in the week?
Fear not, every Sunday in July guided tours of Hinchingbrooke House will be happening and Cambs Lock will be hosting vintage tea and buns at their premises. St. Neots museum are holding their popular History Festival July 14th and we will also have RAF Wyton Heritage Centre mounting an exhibition in the town hall the third weekend of the month.
Busy in the day?
Evening events throughout July will include two tours of the Cromwell Museum, a series of talks by local historians on such diverse subjects as the Battle of Huntingdon in 1645, the Whitney collection (a series of Victorian through to 1950’s pictures of Huntingdonshire) and the Hunts Cyclist battalion in WW1. For the brave amongst you there will be talks on the ghosts that haunt Huntingdon and a self-guided ghost tour ending at The Falcon for spirits of a different kind. The month will end with the Huntingdonshire Pub Quiz, where you’ll be able to flaunt your new local history knowledge.
Got the kids or grandchildren?
Bring them! There will be lots to do for the children; meeting a Civil War Soldier every Friday at the Cromwell Museum, their own town trail tracking down the Lego figures hiding in each display and of course the Norris Museum’s wonderful children’s event July 25th at the George Hotel.
Best of all?
All events will be free.
This year will be the first in what we plan to be an annual festival; so please do come support us, visit the shop displays, do a ghost tour, drop a few pounds in our donation pots, get in touch on Facebook (@huntshistoryfest) and maybe learn something new about the places all around you.