Berkeley Castle Uncovered: Intrigue & artefacts revealed
By David Wood
Where: Berkeley Castle, Gloucestershire GL13 9BQ
When: Sunday, September 1, to Wednesday, September 29
This September Berkeley Castle offers an intimate insight into the stories and artefacts that form part of the remarkable history of the Castle.
Lovers of history, castles, fashion, gardens, art, and intrigue will be captivated with talks, garden tours and exhibitions, with access to rarely seen exhibits and spaces.
Enter the very cell where King Edward II spent his final days before his notorious murder in 1327, and discover what Mrs Berkeley wore to Charles & Diana's wedding in 1981.
Every Monday, Castle custodian Josh Nash shares three key phases in the building's history.
On Tuesdays, estate archivist Karen Davidson talks about some of the chapters in the Berkeley family's ownership of the Castle, which continues today after nearly 900 years! Illustrated by 15 documents from the archives, the talk reveals enthralling details of a family feud, the murder of the king and the last private battle fought on English soil.
Explore the makings of a castle garden every Wednesday with a fascinating and informative tour with the castle's head gardener of almost 30 years, Chris Gill.
Join castle steward John Pinner as he takes you on an abridged tour to discover the history behind two castle paintings and tapestries depicting Greek Myths and Biblical stories.
You'll also be granted access to areas that are normally out of bounds to the public. The delightful dahlia-filled Keep Garden is a colourful contrast to the sinister history connected to Kind Edward II's cell. Both the garden and the cell will be opened up for the first time in many years.
Also on show throughout September is an exhibition of Mrs Berkeley's dresses. Spanning three decades, the display showcases her wedding dress from 1967. It also features a stunning Dior ballgown and a number of vintage Givenchy dresses.
The Uncovered exhibition also provides the opportunity to see a collection of 19th Century sporting arms, an exquisitely detailed Saxon ring, a large Berkeley flag and other fascinating items discovered within the castle walls over the last nine centuries.
"All of these artefacts and spaces make our incredible history really come to life," said Charles Berkeley, who heads the team at Berkeley Castle. "We are excited to launch this exhibition and share these fascinating stories with our visitors."
The Berkeley Castle Uncovered exhibition runs from Sunday, September 1, to Wednesday, September 29. Entry to the exhibition is included in the admission fee for the Castle.
The full programme of talks can be found at www.berkeley-castle.com where you can also book entry tickets.
Berkeley Castle is open Sunday to Wednesday, until October 31, from 11am - 5pm (last admission 4pm). Berkeley Castle is found at Berkeley, Gloucestershire, GL13 9PJ Tel: 01453 810303.
For further information about the castle and all events for 2019, please visit www.berkeley-castle.com . Follow the castle on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.
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