Travel back in time with us to the year 1471 and the castle of Richard Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick and known as ‘the Kingmaker’.
For the last 16 years or so our beloved country of England has been torn apart by civil war, a most destructive fight for the throne by two mighty houses, the Red Rose of Lancaster and the White Rose of York.
The throne was held, some say unjustly, by the House of Lancaster after Henry IV claimed it as his own in 1399. However, when the infant Henry VI came to rule in 1422 his right was challenged by Richard, Duke of York, who held royal blood within his own house.
Our own Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick, had played a mighty role in supporting the York house in their claim, eventually leading them to victory and placing the eldest of the three sons of York, Edward, on the throne. Neville had planned to marry the King to a European princess. However King Edward spurned his loyal advice, marrying in secret Elizabeth Woodville, a widow of a Lancastrian supporter and rumoured to be a witch.
Fearing he was losing his own influence over the King to witchcraft, Neville married his daughter Isabel to Edward’s brother George, in defiance of the Kings wishes. He then tried to overthrow Edward and place the more easily influenced York son, George, on the throne. When this failed, Neville ‘turned his coat’ and became a supporter of the Lancastrian King, Henry VI, who had been held throughout Edward’s reign as a prisoner in the Tower of London.
At this time, in the year of our Lord 1471, our Earl of Warwick has restored the rightful King of England, Henry VI, to the throne and is seated at his side as his most trusted and influential advisor.
Come now to join in the feasting and merriment of our wedding in the home of Neville, Earl of Warwick and one of the most powerful men in England.