Thursday, March 07, 2024

"Here is the news from Rutland. This is Edith Weston reading it."

It's all happening in Oakham at the moment. This weekend will see the Queen Edith Festival, marking the approximate 1000th anniversary of the birth of the woman who was the wife of Edward the Confessor and the sister of Harold, who was defeated at the Battle of Hastings.

The Oakham Team Ministry site gives the programme for the festival. On Friday there will be school visits to explore the connections between Queen Edith, All Saints Oakham, Oakham Castle and the Anglo-Saxon burgh of Oakham.

On Saturday there will be:

A celebratory exhibition and other activities in and around All Saints church. Outside there will be Anglo-Saxon re-enactments, while inside there will be something for all ages – an exhibition of the life of Queen Edith, an actor playing Queen Edith herself dressed in royal costume, craft activities, and local artisans demonstrating their work. ... You are invited to come dressed in Anglo-Saxon costume if you wish!  

Sunday will see a special service at All Saints.

The website also tells us more about Edith:

Queen Edith is woven into the history of Rutland as the last Queen to hold many of the manors of our county as her personal possession. Her legacy gently echos down the centuries to the present day, with her name preserved in one of the Rutland villages she held, Edith Weston. 

Successive Queens in the Anglo-Saxon era were awarded the income from a wide variety of estates and manors in order to fund their household and interests. Rutland was a key part of this dower land, which may explain why it escaped being fully merged into the major counties which were being established around this time.

It was Simon Titley who said that all double-barreled English village names sound like American newscasters, "except Mavis Enderby".

I feel sure he would have accepted Edith Weston as another exception to this rule.


Anonymous said...

How about ‘Daglingworth Leer’?

Jonathan Calder said...

I think I've seen him on CNN.