Attractive, wealthy and influential, Katherine Willoughby is one of the most unusual ladies of the Tudor court. A favourite of King Henry VIII, Katherine knows all his six wives, his daughters Mary and Elizabeth, and his son Edward, as well as being related by marriage to Lady Jane Grey.
When her father dies, Katherine becomes the ward of Tudor knight, Sir Charles Brandon. Her Spanish mother, Maria de Salinas, is Queen Catherine of Aragon’s lady in waiting, so it is a challenging time for them all when King Henry marries the enigmatic Anne Boleyn.
Following Anne’s dramatic downfall, Katherine marries Charles Brandon, and becomes Duchess of Suffolk at the age of fourteen. After the tragic death of Jane Seymour, and the short reign of young Catherine Howard. Katherine and Brandon are chosen to welcome Anna of Cleves as she arrives in England.
When the royal marriage is annulled, Katherine’s good friend, Catherine Parr becomes the king’s sixth wife, and they work to promote religious reform. Katherine’s young sons are tutored with the future king, Prince Edward, but when Edward dies his Catholic sister Mary is crowned queen. Katherine’s Protestant faith puts her family in great danger – from which there seems no escape.
Katherine’s remarkable true story continues the epic tale of the rise of the Tudors, which began with the best-selling Tudor trilogy and concludes with the reign of Queen Elizabeth I.
Tony Riches is a full-time UK author of best-selling historical fiction. He lives in Pembrokeshire, West Wales and is a specialist in the history of the Tudors. For more information about Tony’s books please visit his website tonyriches.com and his blog, The Writing Desk and find him on Facebook and Twitter @tonyriches
The 15th century in England saw a series of battles among British noble families and royal relatives that ripped apart the fabric of English politics. As Henry VI was weak leader, two rival branches of the royal House of Plantagenet seized the opportunity for a bold and bloody familial power grab and, in doing so, reshaped the English monarchy. These tumultuous decades saw a rotating cast of kings, families divided, cousin against cousin, and fortunes made and lost.
Join Royal Oak as historian and educator Carol Ann Lloyd focuses on the key players in this tempestuous saga, including Henry VI, his wife Marguerite of Anjou, the father and son Duke of York team, the Kingmaker, Richard III, Margaret Beaufort and her relatives, and the first Tudor king. She also will explain how and why this time of civil war came to be known as the “Wars of the Roses.”
This just in from Natalie Grueninger and On The Tudor Trail…
Over two exciting months, Natalie Grueninger will host weekly discussions on her podcast, Talking Tudors, with a number of leading experts & Boleyn historians. The rich array of topics will cover everything from Boleyn supporters at Henry VIII’s court to Thomas Cromwell’s role in Anne Boleyn’s downfall. Listeners will gain a fresh perspective on one of the most prominent and misunderstood families of the Tudor era, and come face to face with the people behind the famous family name.
In addition to the weekly episodes, there will also be giveaways and guest posts by some amazing historians/novelists: Tracy Borman, Adrienne Dillard, Wendy J. Dunn, Andy Demsky and Tamsin Lewis. As well as the podcasts and guest articles, illustrator Kathryn Holeman will present two fun Tudor drawing tutorials. But wait, there’s more… The brilliant Professor Suzannah Lipscomb, will answer your questions about Anne Boleyn!
During a blustery 18 days in June 1520, an historic event took place in the Pale of Calais. Here King Henry VIII of England and King Francis I of France met in an ostentatious display of power, wealth and status. Masterminded by Thomas Wolsey, the aim was to join the two kingdoms in a pact of solidarity and friendship, notably against the insurgence of the Ottoman Empire, which was threatening Christian Europe at the time.
It was a spectacular event that became famous in its own lifetime. Now 500 years on, over the weekend of the 9-10 May 2020, The Tudor Travel Guide is celebrating this historic event by holding a FREE two-day virtual summit. You will hear from experts in their fields talking about a range of different aspects of the event: from the social, political and cultural context, to original research to locate Henry’s celebrated temporary palace, clothing & textiles, food and more…
Speaker line up:
Saturday 9 May:
Many of the speakers have offered to give away a copy of one of their books as part of a book bundle giveaway to one lucky winner, who will be selected at random at the end of the event. The winner will be notified by email and The Tudor Travel Guide will post the winner’s name on FB and Twitter. Books included in the bundle are:
The Field of Cloth of Gold, by Glenn Richardson
In the Footsteps of the Six Wives of Henry VIII, by Sarah Morris and Natalie Grueninger.
Henry VIII and the Men who made Him, by Tracy Borman
A Banquet at the Old Hall: An Invitation to participate in Historic Cooking, by Brigitte Webster
Tudor London, by Natalie Grueninger
The Great Wardrobe Accounts of Henry VII and Henry VIII, by Maria Heyward (tbc)
A colour paper by Julian Munby of his original research on finding he location of the temporary palace at the Field of Cloth of Gold will also be included.
Yale University Press have also kindly offered to make free sample chapters available from a range of their Tudor related books (details still to be finalised) for EVERY registrant to the summit.
How to sign up:
This online summit is FREE attend. You simply need to register you name and email address. Don’t worry if you can’t make the dates and times advertised or are in a different time zone. All the videos will remain available to view until the 24 June 2020 to coincide with the final day of the actual event, 500 years ago. However only those registering for the event will have access to the videos.
How to register:
Sign up will open on Thursday 9 April 2020 and will remain open until 48 hours before the event, i.e. Midnight on Wednesday 7 May 2020.
Follow this link to the sign-up page & join today! REGISTER
All images either Public Domain or shared courtesy of Dr Sarah Morris
Sir Francis Bryan was Henry VIII’s most notorious ambassador and one of his closest companions. Bryan was a man of many talents; jouster, poet, rake and hell-raiser, gambler, soldier, sailor and diplomat. He served his king throughout his life and unlike many of the other men who served Henry VIII, Bryan kept his head and outlived his sovereign. This book tells the story of his life from coming to court at a young age through all his diplomatic duties to his final years in Ireland.
Bio: Sarah-Beth Watkins’ life-long love of history and writing has seen her publish articles in magazines and online, and she is fast establishing herself as one of the world’s most eminent figures in the field of Tudor and Stuart biographical expertise with books such as Lady Katherine Knolly and The Tudor Brandons. Sarah-Beth also tutors creative writing and journalism.
February 1542 A young woman awaits her execution in the Tower of London, sent to death on the orders of her husband, Henry VIII.
Daughter of the nobility, cousin to a fallen Queen, Catherine Howard rose from the cluttered ranks of courtiers at the court of Henry VIII to become the King’s fifth wife. But hers is a tale that starts long before the crown was placed on her head. A tale of tragedy and challenges, predators and prey; the story of a young girl growing up in a perilous time, facing dangers untold.
The fifth wife of Henry VIII would end her life on the block, like her cousin Anne Boleyn… But where did her story begin?
Shadow of Persephone is Book One in the series The Story of Catherine Howard, by G. Lawrence (Gemma Lawrence)
From author Natalie Grueninger and illustrator Kathryn Holeman…
We are thrilled to announce the perfect, complete gift package for the Tudor queen or king in your life. Fans of Tudor history know well that gift-giving is a dangerous business, and this package allows you to curate your selections to ensure peace and joy in your realm on Christmas morning.
The Ultimate Tudor Christmas Package includes:
1 limited edition ornament. 3” x 3” frame with ribbon for hanging. Choose from 3 options: Elizabeth I, Anne Boleyn, or Elizabeth Woodville.
1 copy of Colouring History: Tudor Queens and Consorts.
1 box of 12 color pencils.
1 bookmark. Pick from 2 options: Anne Boleyn or Elizabeth I.
1 necklace. Pick from 3 options: Anne Boleyn, Elizabeth I, or Katherine of Aragon.
1 notepad. Pick from 2 options: Tudor Floral or Tudor Florals & Creatures.
1 coaster set. Pick from 2 options: 15th c. Tudor pattern or The Tudors.
1 notecard. Pick from 3 options: Henry VIII and his 6 wives (humor), 15th c. Tudor pattern, and Winter’s Evening at Hampton Court Palace. This card will be placed on the outside of your wrapped package so you can write your own message to the recipient. NOTE: If you want us to write your note for you, there is a spot on the form at check-out for you leave us instructions to do so.
A beautifully gift-wrapped box including all items.
The limited edition package includes $100 worth of Tudor treasures for only $59.99 USD. It is gift wrapped with care using our illustrated Tudor pattern paper and ships for free within the United States. We also offer low international flat rate shipping.
The last day to order this package for Christmas Day is December 19, 2019.
A wonderful window into the mind of the iconic Anne Boleyn. Step into her world as she retells her story. We know what history has told us. But we are yet to know the woman behind the legend. Take a peek inside and see what she has to say about her life and legacy. “Many have tried to tell my story … but none have told the truth. I will have my say.” The book is written from a first person perspective and is a fresh look at the well known story of Anne Boleyn. Find out the truth about her love for Henry Tudor and the truth about how the tragedies in her world affected her.
About the author:
Holly-Eloise Walters is an author from Bristol, England. She debuted with her first book, The Most Happy on the 4th October 2019. She has always enjoyed writing and intends to continue her work within the historical fiction genre. Holly is 26 years old and has lived in Bristol her whole life. Her first book, The Most Happy is a historical fiction based upon the life of Anne Boleyn.
Holly wishes to breathe new life into historical figures and has quoted that her goal for The Most Happy was to “Give Anne back her voice.” She goes on to say.
“I have always disliked how some of our history is seen as nothing more than a name in a book. We forget that Anne, like many others was a real person with real thoughts and feelings.”
The Most happy is now available to purchase at these sites:
★★★★ “Seen through fresh eyes, and particularly from a 21st century perspective, (Katheryn’s) story is not just tragic but horrifying…A strong debut production… historically interesting and emotionally impactful” -The Blog of Theatre Things
Producer: Goosebite Theatre
Playwright: Catherine Hiscock
Director: Alex Pearson
Chorus Director: Emmanuela Lia
Casting Director: Natalie Harper
★★★★ “Contemporary and heartbreaking….Catherine Hiscock gives an outstanding performance as Katheryn” -London Pub Theatres
An all-female cast retells the story of seventeen year old Katheryn Howard, fifth wife of King Henry VIII, in this poignant examination of power, truth and blame
A young woman on trial
Locked within her rooms, whilst men investigate their conduct, the young queen and her ladies await the interrogations they know will come.
Set against the shallow and oppressive world of the Tudor court and influenced by classical Greek drama, Katheryn Howard is a new play that is both contemporary and hauntingly relevant.
There are men talking about me now
Talking about you but mainly about me
Written by Catherine Hiscock, Katheryn Howard was expanded from a short monologue that first appeared at Glass Splinters-a writing night at The Pleasance Theatre, dedicated to ‘untold stories’ of women from history. Developed into a full length production, the play enjoyed sell out shows at The Brockley Jack Theatre. The show is under the direction of Alex Pearson with movement direction by Emmanuela Lia.
Catherine Hiscock ~ Katheryn Howard, Natalie Harper ~ Jane Boleyn, Emmanuela Lia ~ Kit Tilney, Francesca Anderson ~ Joan Bulmer, Srabani Sen ~ Isabelle Baynton
“★★★★ “An intriguing assertion of Howard’s version of events” -London Theatre1
Wednesday, November 6th will be the anniversary of the day King’s men burst into Katheryn’s rooms at and informed her and her ladies that they were under house arrest. On this night the theatre will be holding an informal social. This will include a free drink from the bar and a chance to meet the cast and creatives with any questions. They will be raising money for the charity Tender that works with young people using drama and arts to end sexual abuse and domestic violence.
Theatre info here:
The Hope Theatre 207 Upper Street London N1 1RL 29 October – 16 November Tuesday – Saturday at 7.45pm Tickets £15 & £12
Rare surviving piece of dress once worn by Elizabeth I currently on display at Hampton Court Palace alongside world-famous Rainbow Portrait
Following a three-year conservation project by Historic Royal Palaces, the spectacular Bacton Altar Cloth is on display at Elizabeth I’s former home this autumn, united for the first time with the iconic portrait in which it may once have featured
An elegantly embroidered altar cloth which may once have been part of a dress worn by Queen Elizabeth I will is on display for the first time at Hampton Court Palace this October in an exhibition entitled The Lost Dress of Elizabeth I. The ‘Bacton Altar Cloth’, discovered in a church in rural Herefordshire, is now considered to be one of the rarest survivals of Elizabethan dress in existence. After undergoing extensive conservation work at Hampton Court Palace for the past two years, it is exhibited alongside a portrait of the ‘Virgin Queen’ featuring a dress of strikingly similar design.
The richly embroidered textile – named after the church in Bacton, Herefordshire where it was preserved for centuries – was identified by Historic Royal Palaces curator Eleri Lynn as being part of a high status sixteenth-century court dress back in 2016. The altar cloth has long been associated with Blanche Parry, one of Queen Elizabeth I’s most faithful servants who eventually became her Chief Gentlewoman of the Bedchamber, and who was born in Bacton. Records show that Elizabeth regularly gifted her discarded clothing to Parry as one of her closest confidantes, and for years there was speculation that the altar cloth may have a connection to the Queen. On examining the textile, Lynn – an expert in Tudor court dress – was able to identify previously unseen features, studying the seams of the fabric to confirm it had once formed part of a skirt.
Following the exciting discovery, Historic Royal Palaces – the independent charity that cares for Hampton Court Palace – agreed to commence a conservation programme to stabilise the fragile fabric in the palace’s world-class textile studio. Further examination of the cloth by experts has added weight to Lynn’s theory that it might once have belonged to the Tudor Queen. Its creation from high-status silver chamblet silk, use of professional embroidery including real gold and silver thread, and distinct evidence of pattern-cutting all suggest that the item could have formed part of Elizabeth’s lavish wardrobe. The conservation team were also able to test the dyes within the fabric, discovering that it contained expensive Indigo and red dye sourced from Mexico – the kind of materials only available to a person a very high status.
Displayed alongside the altar cloth is the iconic Rainbow Portrait (c. 1600-1602), on loan from Hatfield House, which depicts Elizabeth I wearing a gown that bears a tantalising resemblance. On display for the first time ever at Hampton Court Palace, the portrait – attributed to Marcus Gheeraerts the Younger – was commissioned by Robert Cecil and is filled with symbolism including motifs of eyes and ears. Accompanying the painting will be a selection of rare domestic print books dating from the Tudor period, which would have provided inspiration for many of the embroidered motifs fashionable during Elizabeth’s reign – including those found on the Bacton Altar Cloth – brought together for the first time with other stunning embroidery work from the period. Unpacking the Virgin Queen’s now iconic style, the exhibition will explore the artistry and majesty of the Tudor wardrobe, Elizabeth’s inner-circle of women, how embroidery served as a way of female bonding at court, along with the fascinating world of secret symbols and Elizabethan codes.
Eleri Lynn, Collections Curator at Historic Royal Palaces, said “After three-years of painstaking conservation and research, we’re thrilled to finally be putting this exquisite object on display at Hampton Court Palace, Elizabeth’s former home. To have an item of Tudor dress with such a close link to Queen Elizabeth I is extraordinarily rare, and we are very excited to display the Bacton Altar Cloth next to the legendary Rainbow Portrait, with its prominent similarities to the fabric of the cloth itself.”
The Lost Dress of Elizabeth I will run from October 12, 2019 until February 23, 2020 at Hampton Court Palace, on loan from St Faith’s Church, Bacton.
For more information and images, please contact Sophie Lemagnen in the Historic Royal Palaces Press Office: firstname.lastname@example.org/ 0203 166 6304
Historic Royal Palaces is the independent charity that looks after the Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace, the Banqueting House, Kensington Palace, Kew Palace and Hillsborough Castle and Gardens. We help everyone explore the story of how monarchs and people have shaped society, in some of the greatest palaces ever built. We raise all our own funds and depend on the support of our visitors, members, donors, sponsors and volunteers. With the exception of Hillsborough Castle and Gardens, these palaces are owned by The Queen on behalf of the nation, and we manage them for the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. Historic Royal Palaces cares for Hillsborough Castle and Gardens under a separate contract with the Northern Ireland Office. Registered charity number 1068852. For more information visit www.hrp.org.uk
All information is shared courtesy of Hampton Court Palace and Historic Royal Palaces.