Place: Castle Acre Priory (Castle Acre) (Castle Acre, Norfolk, England)
Number of performances: 2
20–21 July 1927, afternoon
Name of pageant master and other named staff
- Pageant Master and Writer [Pageant
Master]: Scott, Frederick Keeling
- Master of the Music: Mr Heath, Organist
of St. Margaret’s, King’s Lynn
- Pageant Ground Master: The Rev. A. Bek,
Vicar of Castleacre
- Stage Manager: Mr J.D. Gillett
Patrons included the Earl of Leicester and Bishop of Norwich
Names of executive committee or equivalent
- Chairman: Rev. F. Keeling Scott
- Treasurer: Rev. W.F. Batty, Rev. B.
Mahon, Rev. A. Bek, Rev. Fl.C. Oakley
- Treasurer: Mr. J.O. Dennis
- Mr T. Seaman
- Mr J.F. Aldiss
- Mr. R. Purdie
- Lt-Col Villiers-Stuart
- Mrs Aldiss
- Miss M. Harbord
- Mrs Villiers-Stuart
- Mrs Purdie
- Mrs Keeling-Scott
- Mrs H. Bunting
- Mrs Heyhoe
- Rev. E.G. Bright-Betton
Names of script-writer(s) and other credited author(s)
Scott, Frederick Keeling
Names of composers
Numbers of performers
Object of any funds raised
Prices of admission and seats: highest–lowest
Scene I. The Church of Yesterday
Reville blown by unseen trumpeters and Father Time recites a prologue.
Prior Lambert talks of the site as it used to be. The Priors of the past with monks appear before the audience.
Scene II. The Church of To-Day
Father Egbert and the monks talk of their vocation. The Mother Church greets them all and there is a procession.
Scene III. The Church of To-Morrow
The Ranks of the Church of To-day Open and Monks and Priors emerge. The Mother Church and the Bishop speak of spreading the faith across the world. Africa, India and Burma, China, Egypt, India, and the Jews give thanks for the Mother Church.
Key historical figures mentioned
Newspaper coverage of pageant
Eastern Daily Press
Book of words
- None known
Other primary published materials
- Castleacre Pageant. Np, 1927.
References in secondary literature
Archival holdings connected to pageant
- Copy of Programme in Norwich Millennium Library, Norfolk Heritage Centre, Reference, CAS 791.62
Sources used in preparation of pageant
Castle Acre Priory was a major religious settlement. Like most priories, it was dissolved during the Reformation. Its estate was given to Edward Coke, whose descendant—the present Earl of Leicester—owned the site and acted as pageant patron. In the prologue, the reverend Frederick Keeling Scott, Vicar of Swaffham, wrote:
We Christians of 1927, who nearly four centuries later see the wonderful remains of this House of God may, if we will, learn much from that Church life of yesterday, for which it stands. Let us at least grasp and use the opportunities of to-day, so that we may face the past without shame, and the future with hope. The Call of the Church of To-morrow sounds from the whole of Earth, it is a call to build for God. The Scythe of Time will cut down all our work which is perishable, but that which we faithfully build for God cannot perish, it stands for Eternity.1
The Pageant was distinctly Anglo-Catholic in its portrayal, suggesting in the final scene that the pre-reformation church would be restored, and that all nations, including Jews, would be converted (which some Christians see as a precondition for the apocalypse). Its focus was squarely on religious themes.
Castleacre Pageant (Np, 1927), 8.
How to cite this entry
Angela Bartie, Linda Fleming, Mark Freeman, Tom Hulme, Alex Hutton, Paul Readman, ‘Castleacre Pageant’, The Redress of the Past, http://www.historicalpageants.ac.uk/pageants/1386/