Let battle commence – the city’s fantastic Heritage Festival is back!

The annual event returns this weekend bringing plenty of live action to the city centre celebrating 3,500 years of history with over 300 costumed re-enactors.


Presented by Vivacity in association with Perkins Engines Company Limited, Peterborough Cathedral and Peterborough City Council this is the city centre’s most popular event, attracting over 37,500 people last year.

The highlight for this year will commemorate the 375th anniversary of the start of the English Civil War, seeing Parliamentarians and Royalists battle in a full blown re-enactment of the siege of Woodcroft Castle.


You can see Roundheads and Cavaliers battle for control of Peterborough in a spectacular display of fighting skill with period weaponry, armour and siege tactics – the main performances are at 3pm each day – plus see the soldiers warm up for battle each day with a drill display at 12pm.

The Heritage Festival also features a large programme of fringe events running until June 24 where you can get involved with the multitude of heritage societies and attractions across the city – see online or pick up a brochure from around the city for more information.

To enhance the main weekend, they’ll be welcoming back the ever-popular keynote speaker as part of Saturday night’s offering.

Following sell out success from the likes of David Starkey, 2017 welcomes TV and Radio favourite, Professor Kate Williams (BBC2’s Restoration Home and Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour).

In this beautifully illustrated talk, Dr Williams uncovers the truth about Queen Victoria: The First Royal Rebel and her Struggle for the Throne. Tickets can be bought from the Key Theatre on 01733 207239 or online at


We always love this fabulous free event and there’s something for all ages – and that includes the young ones.

While the main arena displays take place with historical entertainment for all, the little ones can enjoy some traditional entertainment designed exclusively for them with Fiery Jack, the court jester, in the Cathedral grounds.

There are also plenty of fun things to do throughout the day, including family trails, scavenger hunts and even a drawing competition with a wide range of prizes to be won!


New for 2017 is Horace the Pliosaur, a giant, 35 foot-long sea lizard.

Fresh out of the Jurassic ocean, he’s a 165 million years old unique blend of engineering, film and live performance with fact-filled, fun, family entertainment.

It’s a great opportunity for families to discover Jurassic history in an interactive way.

The full schedule of events, including how to book tickets for Saturday’s lecture with Kate Williams, is now online at:

Photos: Chris Brudenell for ESP Magazine


#HeritageFestival #VivacityHeritage

Recent Posts

See All