Wythenshawe Park will go back to its historical roots this weekend, as a Civil War re-enactment group descends upon the Manchester City Council owned park.
Members of the group will also set up camp in the gardens behind the old Hall on Saturday June 27 and Sunday June 28, and visitors will be able to see how soldiers lived around the mid-1600s when Parliamentarian forces laid siege to Wythenshawe Hall.
The camp will be open from 10am-5pm on Saturday and until 4pm. There is a £1 charge for parking but entry to the camp and to Wythenshawe Hall is free.
In past years the park has seen the re-enactment of battles between the Royalists and the Roundheads, but this time the focus is on the smells, sights and sounds of a military camp, including cooking, clothes, medicines, crafts, musket firing and drill practice.
Re-enactors from as far afield as Yorkshire and Scotland will be descending on the park, and many of them will be based in the camp in the gardens but others will also be in the historic Hall for the first time, which is open all weekend.
Organising the re-enactors is a military operation in itself. The man set with the task of raising the troops is Jono Johnson from Colonel Edward Montagu's Regiment of Foote, part of the Roundhead Association and the English Civil War Society.
The re-enactors enjoy the communal life and see themselves as a family regiment, encouraging visitors of all ages to ask questions and fully explore the camp. Jono's own daughter, Lucy, aged 15, made her first appearance at three months old.
Councillor Mike Amesbury, Manchester City Council's Executive Member for Culture and Leisure:
"This is a wonderful event for families or other residents, who want to find out more about our local history, or who just wants an opportunity to enjoy one of Manchester's great parks."
For more information please ring the park office on 0161 998 2117.