Williamite men to appear in Twelfth field

Volunteers with Living History Ireland demonstrate the lives of Williamite soldiers
Volunteers with Living History Ireland demonstrate the lives of Williamite soldiers
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Those celebrating the Twelfth at Crossgar this year may be forgiven for thinking they have travelled back in time some 300 years.

For up to 40 Williamite and Jacobite soldiers will appear in the field, living out their lives as though they were on their way to the Battle of the Boyne in 1690.

The volunteers will be coming from all over the island of Ireland to play the meticulously researched roles with Living History Ireland.

Quartermaster George Logan told the News Letter: “We will be living as they really would have lived at the time. There will be an authentic officer’s tent, and other tents for the rank and file.

“We will be eating food as they would have 300 years ago and living how they would have lived. And we will have authentic weapons, firing our canon about 4pm.

“We are not just guessing as to how we put it all together. Four or five of our volunteers have degrees in history.

“We will also have ‘camp followers’ who were women would have tended to the injured soldiers.”

Johnny Jackson, Worshipful Master, Cumberland True Blue LOL 358 said: “What we really want to achieve this year is to reach out and invite people from further afield, for example from Belfast, to come and see a traditional country Twelfth.

“This is a special year for us in Mid-Down as Crossgar only hosts the Twelfth every 16 years. Plus our Orange Hall is 150 years old and the lodge itself will be 170.

We have refurbished our hall and have a growing youthful membership, so overall we really want to make the Twelfth at Crossgar something to remember this year.”

The lodge will also be displaying their 90-year-old banner, painted by the famed Tutill producers in London.

The actors will also put on a display on 11 July at Manse Road Kilkeel from 2pm to midnight, with a skirmish at 8pm.