Charter Day 2015 based on my Photographs

By Rhys Jones

In 1215, King John arrived near Wyche on horseback, but 800 years later he arrived in rather more comfort by narrow boat. I was granted an audience with the King to take his photo as he boarded the long boat, and I was invited to travel with the royal party. Photos show the King, Queen, and Royal party laughing and joking, not realising that some of the people of Droitwich would be hostile.

Anticipating the arrival of the King, monks and local dignitaries assembled at St Andrew’s Church and paraded to the canal, passing crowds who were mostly unaware of what was happening. When the King arrived, negotiations soon started regarding the fees to be paid by local businesses to the King. Some of the locals showed their hostility. One in particular, risked having his head cut off in public but was spared at the last minute.

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The locals told the King of their plans for an open air swimming pool, parks, a ring road, and many charity shops. Eventually agreement was reached and all concerned made their way to St Andrew’s Church for the signing of the Droitwich Charter. Being unable to write, the King requested that a monk make a splendid seal, which was soon attached to the Charter. Crowds gathered round to witness the event and many applauded in recognition of its significance.

Meanwhile, some of the child slaves turned on theirslave master and put him in the finely carved stocks which just happened to be in the right place at the right time. The slave master received his punishment in the form of soaking by flying wet sponges.

In a different part of the town, the Droitwich Arts Network held one of their regular children’s painting competitions. The Mayor of Droitwich selected the winners from over 100 entries.

All photos © Rhys Jones

Please click on the image to see full size photo gallery

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