Military Odyssey 2016
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- Last updated: 19/12/2016
This year saw the Military Odyssey Show, run by James and Roger Aslett, enter its 16th year; the multi period military event had over 100 re-enactment groups attending over the Bank Holiday Weekend, depicting over 2000-years of living history, varying from the Ancient Greeks, all the way through to the present day.
I particularly enjoyed a new display run by an American Civil War re-enactment group that had set up a highly accurate (as far as I know) camp in the woods, together with realistic injuries and fullon battle charges, complete with fabulous displays of firing and reloading.
This showcased the ‘Battle of the Wilderness’, which was the first battle of Ulysses S Grant’s 1864 Overland Campaign and resulted in a staggering 30,000 casualties. Luckily the re-enactors survived the day with minimal damage.
There were as always various different battles and arena displays, showcasing different eras with a personal favourite being an unfortunate automotive breakdown, which turned into a stunning Vietnam ambush, complete with a realistic Napalm airstrike, which proved extremely popular with everyone present.
Another noteworthy display was that of Regia Anglorum, who recreate the sights, sounds and smells of life in a Viking encampment from the 11th Century. Somehow they pulled off a superhuman feat, managing to set up a Viking Longboat and an entire village setting, housing around 200 people. Luckily, they didn’t neglect their security, with a 40ft palisade protecting them from marauding warriors; so when around 30 fighters attacked the village with swords, spears and arrows, they were able to hold their own – for now!
Putting on yet another fantastic display I was very pleased to see the Desert Rats, complete with camel, back for another year. With the glorious sunshine you could almost fool yourself into thinking you were really there.
As always, there were traders in abundance, with pretty much everything that you could ever think of for sale, from Medieval Armour through to a rather attractive cannon, there really was something for everyone, even I was sorely tempted until rather forcibly reminded by my husband about the lack of space at home.
The finale, as always, was an impressive World War Two battle, with around 300 re-enactors with Jeeps, Dodges, halftracks, Bren Gun carriers, M8 Greyhounds, Hellcat tank, Stugs, Panzer 3s and many other vehicles, made for an amazing show, with plenty of noise and action, which closed the weekend’s festivities perfectly. This show continues to go from strength to strength and with such fantastic displays I can certainly see why I will wait eagerly to see what the 2017 Military Odyssey will hold.