Turn the clock back to Tudor times at the Katharine of Aragon Festival

Monday 25 November

The Katharine of Aragon Festival takes place from 23rd to 26th January 2020 at Peterborough Cathedral and Peterborough Museum and Art Gallery.

  • The Festival marks the anniversary of 29th January 1536, when Henry VIII’s first wife was buried at Peterborough Abbey. She lies here to this day.

  • It offers a lively programme of events for history lovers, children and families. It is presented by Peterborough Cathedral in association with Vivacity.

Peterborough turns the clock back to Tudor times at the end of January when it hosts an action-packed, Tudor-themed festival to commemorate the day when Katharine of Aragon was buried at Peterborough Abbey (now the Cathedral) in 1536.

The Festival programme features the first ever performance of a Katharine of Aragon monologue by Lesley Smith, Curator of Tutbury Castle, who will wear an authentic costume commissioned especially for the occasion. There will also be a talk about Katharine’s daughter Princess Mary and her upbringing by Melita Thomas, the co-founder and editor of the Tudor Times website Spanish artists will present A Homage to Katharine of Aragon from Spain, with music, drama and dance performances (supported by the Spanish Embassy).

There are numerous activities for families too: At Home with the Tudors living history days at Peterborough Museum and tours led by ‘Old Scarlett the Tudor gravedigger’, at the Cathedral. In addition, there will be a Family Audience with Queen Katharine in the Cathedral Visitor Centre, at which Lesley Smith will meet children and their families, in costume and character as Katharine of Aragon.

The Festival begins with a Service of Commemoration which anyone can attend, when wreaths will be laid on Katharine’s tomb. Before that, schoolchildren, many of them in Tudor costume, accompanied by civic dignitaries and period musician Gareth Williams, will proceed across Cathedral Square from St John’s Church to attend the service at the Cathedral.

See the Festival programme

Full information about the programme, with details of how to book tickets, follow this link:


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