The anniversary of a major battle between the Scots and English has received a boost with lottery funding. The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) has given its initial support for the development of proposals to mark the 500thanniversary of the Battle of Flodden in 2013.
The HLF has awarded a development grant of £81,700 to develop plans for next year’s anniversary. There is an opportunity to receive a further £887,400. The award has been given to the Flodden 1513 Ecomuseum Ltd.
“This is an important milestone in our work to bring the 500th anniversary of Flodden to a wider national audience as well as to encourage community groups to mark the occasion with projects of a more local nature”, said Lord Joicey, a director of the Flodden 1513 Ecomuseum Ltd.
The battle of Flodden was fought on September 9, 1513. The death of James IV of Scotland and the majority of the Scottish nobility at the hands of the Earl of Surrey’s English army was a cataclysmic event for Scotland. The battle was the last bloody medieval battle in Britain, and the last occasion on which a monarch of the British Isles was killed on the field of battle.
The focus of the Flodden 500 project is to inform, involve and support the wider community in commemorating the anniversary, as well as to co-ordinate, help to develop, and provide publicity for the smaller commemorative/legacy initiatives in the Scottish Borders, North Northumberland and further afield.
The grant will support the development of the activities within the core project between April and July 2012, in order to submit the full application in July for assessment in October 2012.
The Flodden project intends to use the 500th anniversary of the battle as a catalyst, to leave a lasting legacy through features such as improved interpretation and access, better skills and capacity within the volunteering population of the Borders, an enhanced understanding of the battle itself and an improved tourism offer.
An exciting community archaeological project will explore many things, including the precise location of the Scottish camp on Flodden Ridge. Archivists from Scottish Borders Council and the Woodhorn Trust will work together on a programme of documentary research, training volunteers to locate historical evidence and research events.
In addition, there will be a special commemorative service led by local clerics and senior national figures from the leading churches in Scotland and England. At Crookham church, which aims to become a centre of peace and reconciliation, a timeline marking significant moments of peace or conflict around the world since Flodden will be created.
Schools in the Borders and North Northumberland will be able to use teachers to develop learning programmes that bring the story of Flodden into the classroom and fit into the two national curricula.
Councillor George Turnbull, Scottish Borders Council’s executive member for education, said: “The 500th anniversary of such an important battle in British history should not go unmarked, but the really important thing is that we use the occasion as a catalyst to encourage a wider understanding of its heritage and its place in our lives – both as Borderers and as citizens of the United Kingdom.”
Steve Stewart, Chief Executive of Northumberland County Council, said: WWe are delighted that the Heritage Lottery Fund have appreciated the strong senses of community, heritage and place that Flodden conveys, and the proposal to raise the profile of the significance and legacy of the battle for future generations.”