Except this next weekend, is a SYW wargaming weekend for me and Colin with members of the AMG group down at Kennilworth wherever that is. So no rest again.
Being a retiring type I had some very interesting discussions with quite a few Americans about the elections this November, I know you shouldn't drink alcohol and discuss politics at the same time, but I did enjoy chewing things over with locals in both New York and Washington. The consensus is dont write Trump off as a loud mouth idiot, he is beginning to look like a winner. I've already been down to Ladbrokes for a sly tenner bet.
Anyway I was lucky enough to be taken to Gettysburg by my wife whilst we were away and the visit got me thinking quite a lot. I am no expert on the ACW period although I have fought quite a few battles in the period over the years, so I do know something about it.
I was very impressed with the whole battlefield experience at Gettyburg which has been very well preserved by some active history buffs and the government. I was lucky enough to be given a tour with a battlefield guide who really knew his stuff, and was very interesting, even my wife was impressed. I was also given a tour of the town of Gettysburg, and one of the houses used by the rebels during the second and third days of the battle. There is also a first class museum at the battefield, full of weapons and ephemera, all it needed was a wonderful model of one of the incidents from the battle to finish the place off.
I know quite a few wargamers will have been to the battlefield, so will know what I am going to say.
Why is it that our American cousins succeed in preserving their history and provide a first class service in its presentation whilst here in the United Kingdom there is next to nothing to tell the wonderful history of our nation?
Clearly there is a very active movement to preserve the battlefields in the USA, and also a genuine desire by the local and national governments to present the areas in their best light, so what happened to us? I am not just talking about the battlefields, as I took a Capitol Hill tour, including the senate house, which was very very popular, and I found it not only instructive but actually quite moving, as the whole thing drove home the importance of using a persons vote. The place was mobbed with schools and colleges taking the same tour, and yes I know the majority will look on it as a skive, but some will take an interest. So what about the mother of all parliaments then? and dont get me started on why the USA have created a moving and informative history of the 9/11 atrocity but there is no record of the attacks on 7/7 in London.
This morning [ 03.30] whilst in a jet lag attack I began thinking about which battlefields should get some loving and a full makeover before they are full paved over. If one took a battle from each period in British history would there be enough left of the fields to create an interesting and historical event?
Surely the battlefield at Hastings is still recoverable for one, then Marston Moor is another, Towton and Bosworth are two further battlefields that were extremely important and deserve the Hollywood treatment. Regarding the English /Scottish Wars, there is Flodden, The Battle of the Standard near Northallerton, and Pinkie Cleugh.
In Scotland the Jacobites have invested heavily in Bannockburn naturally, but what about Homildon Hill, Falkirk, Prestonpans etc. Even if only five or six were preserved and invested in, at least we could tell some of the history that made this country, and create some jobs for some people. Just a thought.
Anyway back to reality.
Again a view from Little Big Top.