Newsletter – November 2012

November 19th, 2012 by JCope

Not inappropriately for its November meeting, the Society welcomed back Graham Sutherland to talk about the Gunpowder Plot of 1605.  The story of how Robert Catesby led a group of Catholics in a plot to assassinate the Protestant King James 1 and replace him with his daughter Princess Elizabeth is well known but Graham’s presentation focused on the Midlands connections. The plot started in Catesby’s home in Lapworth but the plotters were betrayed and Guy Fawkes arrested and tortured.  The remaining plotters had taken supplies from Warwick Castle and gunpowder from Hewell Grange before taking shelter at Holbeche House.  Here they managed to blow the roof off when a spark ignited the gunpowder they had been drying in front of the fire.  The following day the house was surrounded by the Sheriff of Worcester and the plotters killed or captured.  Graham presented the story in his usual absorbing style with modern and contemporary illustrations and left us with some interesting questions over whether Fawkes was set up (even if he did achieve lasting infamy).

November saw two fascinating walks around Chaddesley Corbett led by Sylvia Beardshaw (followed by a pub lunch) and an equally interesting visit to the Birmingham Museums Collection Centre.

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