Issued: October 8, 2016
PICTURES: A slideshow of pictures (courtesy of the local news and information website Everything Epping Forest) can be viewed HERE
Pictures for media use
13A - Civic dignitaries and re-enactors prepare for the costumed procession along Sun Street, Waltham Abbey CLICK HERE
29A - Waltham Abbey councillors - Epping Forest District Council chairman Jeanne Lea (left) and Waltham Abbey mayor Helen Kane - lay flowers at the King Harold memorial stone CLICK HERE
37A - Civic dignitaries, re-enactors and members of the Waltham Abbey detachment of the Army Cadet Force at the King Harold memorial stone CLICK HERE
King Harold Day in Waltham Abbey
King Harold Day was celebrated in Waltham Abbey today with the laying of flowers on the King Harold memorial stone in the grounds of the Abbey Church.
Flowers were laid by Waltham Abbey councillors Jeanne Lea, the chairman of Epping Forest District Council, and Waltham Abbey mayor councillor Helen Kane, as well as by Jean Church from the Waltham Abbey Historical Society.
This followed a costumed procession along Sun Street and Church Street.
This year is the 950th anniversary of the Year of King Harold II, of his Coronation, the three great battles of 1066, and Harold’s death on the battlefield.
The event commemorated Harold Godwinsson, King Harold II, who was Lord of the Manor of Waltham when he was Earl of Essex and East Anglia, owned much land and property in the area, and whose family home with his handfast wife, Edith Swan-Neck, was at Nazeing.
Harold founded the Minster Church which eventually became the Great Abbey, and legend has it that he came to pray at the Miraculous Cross of Waltham before the Battle of Hastings, and that his body was brought back to the town after his death.
Waltham Abbey Mayor Helen Kane said: "It was an honour to again be part of the commemorations this year and to see what a marvellous event King Harold Day has become over the past 13 years.
"Waltham Abbey has a great part to play in our country's history, and that of King Harold, and it is marvellous that King Harold Day, which brings the community together and ensures we remember such an important chapter of history, has become such a great attraction in our town."
Re-enactors set up camp in the Abbey Gardens where visitors could also listen to medieval musicians Trouvère. Birds of prey were on display while the Chingford Morris Men performed their Mummers’ Play.
Various local attractions manned exhibition stalls while Waltham Abbey Town Council had a stall to promote its Neighbourhood Plan..