Party Fit For A Queen

In the summer of 2020, we had a digital Tudor party with young people from Warwickshire Guiding, recreating Elizabeth I’s visit to Kenilworth Castle in 1575.

Actors dressed as Queen Elizabeth I and Dudley in the grounds at Kenilworth Castle

In July 1575, Queen Elizabeth I visited Kenilworth Castle for a 19-day celebration. She was invited by Robert Dudley, who planned to use the celebration as an elaborate proposal. So in July 2020, we held a digital party recreating some of the events from 1575.

Five party planners worked with Jeremy Ashbee, an English Heritage Historian to learn about the history of the original event. Asking all the important questions, from ‘what kind of food would they have eaten?’ to ‘who was taller, Robert Dudley or Elizabeth I?’, in order to plan the perfect (digital) Elizabethan party.

 

Party invitation

Invitation created by one of the party planners

After a couple of weeks of planning the day of the party arrived. In preparation, we had each created food that was shaped to look like something else – for example, cucumber carved into the shape of a snail! This was a popular way to create exciting food for the feasts at Kenilworth.

Other party activities included learning a simple dance routine, putting on makeup in the style of Elizabeth I, and performing a play written by two of the party planners, which re-enacted the celebrations in 1575.

Elizabethan Makeup tutorial

Applying our Elizabethan make up

Elizabeth and Dudley a play

Performing our play

Twenty young people attended the party, resulting in lots of Elizabethan makeup, wonderful food creations and excellent dance moves. Everyone had a lot of fun whilst discovering more about a historical event at a castle in their local area.