King John’s Royal Charter Day in Droitwich

Royal SealBy Royal Seal the citizens of the Town Wich, known as Droitwich, are commanded to attend and witness the Royal Charter presentation ceremony and festivities.

The Royal Charter was signed by King John in Bridgenorth on August 1st 1215, about seven weeks after signing the Magna Carta on 15th June 1215. Four or five merchants from Wich, headed by the elected Reeve (chief), was granted an audience and knowing that John was desperately in need of money, struck a bargain that benefited both parties. The king let at the yearly rental of £100 (over £100,000 in today’s money) all his royal rights to the town of Wich. This was significantly greater that formerly collected by the local Sheriff for the King. The King had now ‘farmed’ out his rights for an annual fee. So called ‘fee farm’ already existed with a few other towns in England. The result was that Wich could now essentially ‘self govern’ itself, with elected representatives, as a tenant of the King and it soon became known as Droitwich.

The following 479 years the £100 per annum remained unchanged and seven more Royal Charters – favours – were granted to Droitwich.


Saturday 1st August 

The Royal Barge

10.45amTown’s official dignitaries townships Mayors parade

Honorary Mayor chain procession from St Andrews  Church to Droitwich Canal

11.00am and 2.30pmKing Johns Barge Procession

King John’s Royal Barge shall arrive at the Royal Marquee in Vines park

Queens Lord Lieutenant

The Lord Lieutenant or his official representative shall receive the Royal Charter from King John followed by Norbury Theatre’s presentation re-enactment

12.15pm – 5.00pm King John Barge Trips

King John’s Royal Barge canal history tour invitation onboard the Royal Barge at Vines park

10.00am – 4.00pm King John’s Kingdom Children’s Art Workshop

In a Kingdom without colour the King has decreed that every child of Droitwich shall be granted the Royal tights to express themselves artistically

The Medieval Saltbarrow

9.00am Kingdom Farms Fayre of the Land Market at Victoria Square

Market Day all the fayre of the land family market, all the goodness of the farmers skills to produce the best of the kingdoms land

12.15pm – 3.00amMedieval Saltbarrow Castle Banquet Buffet

Poor people ate simple and monotonous food. For them meat was a luxury, if they were lucky they had rabbit, beef, mutton, pork and venison. They also ate lots of coarse, dark bread and cheese. They only had one cooked meal a day, in the evening they ate pottage, that was a kind of stew with added vegetables. In autumn time they gathered fruit and nuts.

Today’s Medieval Buffet shall be serving beef, pork and venison, selected local farm cheeses, variety of green salads, bread, fruits of the season.

11.00am Saltbarrow Markets Brew House

Not Ye Old witches potions but the innkeeper’s old English custom of the art of Ale and Cider brewing full of flavours of the countryside.

11.00am King John’s Scribe

Raising the Charter funds township citizens can by proxy purchase a part of Droitwich History for a small fee and receive a King John’s document of payment stamped with the Royal Seal in wax and named scribed by the King official scribe.

4.00pm Raising of the Taxes Auction

Slave auction conducted by the formidable Town Crier. Slaves to be publicly auctioned by means of open bidding, concluding by order auction of the King’s towns confiscated market vegetables and fruit, public bidding. King’s market public punishment stocks.

Friday 31st July, Saturday 1st August and Sunday 2nd August

The 3 Day Music & Cider Festive at Vines park

Supported 3 Counties Cider Perry Association Festive

Medieval Ciders were produced from whole apples, while perry is produced from pears. Murrey comes from blackberries or black mulberries, while prunelle was made from plums. A more unusual fruit juice cider was made from ground and strained pomegranate seeds. 15 local ciders to try.

Fri 31st July / 8.00pm Rattlesnake Jake Band

RattlesnakeRattlesnake Jake Band is Six Piece Soul Band featuring music from Motown, Funk, Chicago Blues, Soul, James Brown to Al Wilson, Kool and the Gang, Wild Cherry, Otis Redding to the Blues Brothers, striving to get the audience to participate in a fun dance evening.

Sat 1st August / 7.30pmBlack Voices

Black VoicesBlack Voices, formed in 1987 by its Music Director Carol Pemberton MBE, has gained a reputation as Europe’s finest female a cappella quintet. Arrangement of spirituals, traditional African, Caribbean and English folk songs, jazz, gospel, pop and reggae as well as fusion of contemporary and classical styles. Black Voices is honoured to have been invited to perform before members of the British Royal Family both in the UK and overseas. In 1998, the ensemble performed at an open air concert for Pope John Paul II in Loreto, Italy. In 1996 they appeared before former President Nelson Mendela at the Two Nations Concert, Royal Albert Hall and at Glasgow’s West End Festival Commonwealth Games. Appeared with Nina Simone, Miriam Makeba, Ray Charles, Hugh Masekela, and Take 6. Toured Australia and Middle East. For more information please visit the website.

Sun 2nd August / 2.30pmXOVA Reggae Band

XOVAXOVA Europe’s favourite 6 piece Reggae Band, performed at festivals in Poland, Lithuania, Spain, Holland, Belgium, Finland and Zanzibar.




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