Australasian Convention 22 – 24 August 2003 in Brisbane, QLD

   Posted by: Julia Redlich   in

This gathering not only brought together members of the Queensland, Victoria and New South Wales branches, but also several from New Zealand, one from Canada, another from Dorset in the UK, and a South Australian who now lives in the ACT.

We were welcomed on the Friday evening with a cocktail party, but before this commenced, candles were lit to represent every Branch and Group within the Society, followed by a reading of the York Minutes on hearing of Richard’s death.  The solemn bit over, we were entertained by a certain Antonio Barberi, Inquisitor di Milano, who asked and demanded answers to a whole lot of questions.


Saturday opened with a talk on the 15th Century Combat Manuals and was followed by the Victorian branch’s blow by blow account of Towton Battle with mock studios in London and York, newsreaders, reporters with mobile phones and an unseen helicopter.  This was a very entertaining presentation on what can be a rather mundane subject.  This led to the next talk on the Hanseatic League – which being read rapidly over lunch – was not conducive to concentrating  on this interesting subject.   Blair Martin (QLD) then presented an excellent Hypothetical on Perkin Warbeck, giving a good opportunity for member participation.  Babs Creamer from Dorset gave a most interesting talk on Cecily Bonville.  The last talk on decorated Manuscripts was truncated due to lack of time … but the illustrations we saw were marvelous.


The feast on Saturday night was wonderful.  The authentic food and entertainment was organized by the Knights Guild of Mercia and Wessex, the highlight of which was a honey type cake with icing depicting Richard’s standard.  Toasts were made to the Queen, the Duke of Gloucester and of course to Richard.

The Bosworth Memorial Service was held on Sunday morning at the Church of the Transfiguration, a beautiful old church … the mass being the 1549-1662 Interim Rite, very like the one with which Richard would have been familiar, although he would have heard it in Latin.  Afterwards we enjoyed a morning tea the like of which we have never seen before and probably never will again.  The raffle was drawn and our own Nancy Sparrowhawk won first prize.  Returning to the conference centre, there was a general discussion on how to promote the Society to make it attractive to young people.  The good response to the Queensland’s website suggests that other branches could benefit from setting up a website.  A goon-type show – The Curse of Bosworth – rounded off an enjoyable weekend before we went our separate ways.

It was great to meet fellow Ricardians, to gain new insights in such a happy environment.  All thanks to the Queensland Branch for organizing this convention and thanks too to Blair Martin for transporting us to and from the locations and motel on the three days.

by Irene Peacock (former member and Secretary of the NSW Branch)