The Anne Boleyn Experience Day Four – Tower of London

Posted By on October 1, 2012

Apologies for the delay in posting this article, Tim was travelling back home after the tour, and some of the guests (un-named!) had a very late night on the last night, so he didn’t get a chance to upload the pictures. Over to Tim…

Our last day was spent at the Tower of London. We travelled up to London with our Blue Badge guide, John, on the coach. As normal, we started our tour at the Tower Hill execution site, where people such as George Boleyn, Thomas Wyatt the Younger and Thomas Cromwell were executed.

Then we went down past the main public entrance, stopping off at the gate where Anne Boleyn entered the Tower both on her coronation and before her execution. Thankfully this time there were less rubbish bags stored at this important site. After entering the Tower, we spent the morning looking at places outside the main White Tower, such as walking to a great spot on the wall where you can clearly see where the Great Hall, Queen’s Lodgings (the original ones, not the present Queen’s House) were. We spent a moment discussing the route that Anne took on her final walk to the scaffold, before walking to the execution spot ourselves.

We then went into the church of St. Peter ad Vincula (St. Peter in Chains), where we got to spend a little time looking at the tile which marks the resting place of Anne Boleyn.

This time we felt un-hurried by the Yeoman warders in the church. This has led me to creating an award “The AB Award for the Best Yeoman Warder”. This time I have awarded it to Steve, who was originally a Royal Marine. Steve knew a lot about history, and apart from the old story about Catherine Howard saying “I die a queen, but I would rather have died the wife of Culpeper”, he did a great job at being respectful about such a wonderful church. Steve was the same Yeoman Warder who took our group round on the private tower tour and Ceremony of the Keys that we had earlier in the year. Congratulations Steve.

Runner’s up for this award goes to “Billy Beefeater” (, who was very pleasant. Things seem to be looking up for the Yeoman Warders!

Our evening meal was lovely as always, and then we had Bess Chilver and her husband Edmund speak to us about Tudor Clothing. I’m always fascinated how long it takes to dress a woman in Tudor Clothes, and how quick and easy the men’s clothing is! Nothing changes… The evening was wonderful, and a big thanks must go to Laurie, one of the guests, who was willing to also be dressed in a Tudor gown. She said that it was hard to breathe in the clothing for a while, but that after she learned to change her breathing pattern, it felt perfectly comfortable. It was a great transformation.

All too soon, the tour was over. There was enough time for people to have a last look around Hever in the morning, and then the coach came to whisk people off back to London.

Thanks to everyone who came on the tour, and I look forward to meeting you all again sometime.

Photos of the day can be found here:

15 thoughts on “The Anne Boleyn Experience Day Four – Tower of London”

  1. Kyra Kramer says:

    I am now suffering from severe Anne Boleyn Experience Envy.

    1. Baroness Von Reis says:

      Kyra,If I could dress in the fashion of that period,every I would,but I just go in full dress and social functons,Renn Fest ect;I would so of loved to live back in the days of the great Kings and Queens,and maybe have knowen Queen Anne. What great great eara it must have been. THX Ab friend Baroness

  2. Dawn 1st says:

    The photos of Bess Chiver’s costume talk were great. One of my most favourite things about Tudor times, (apart from the main characters or course), are the costumes. Though I did chuckle at Edmund in the under clothes before the ‘finery’ went on, no disrespect intended to Edmund, but I do find the men’s garb amusing…sorry! I bet the talk was extremely interesting and would love to attend one, does Ms. Chiver ever ventured up to Scotland do you know.

    1. Baroness Von Reis says:

      Dawn 1st,I totally agree the costume back in the day were wonderfull and yes the mens dress atire ,was well original I must say,however all the period colthing,was stunning.I can’t emagine being a seamstress,it must have taken months to make one gown,also I’m sure if you made the gowns and suites for Henry and his Queens you would not want to mess that up. Kind Regards Baroness.

      1. Dawn 1st says:

        yes you are right the costumes must have taken an age when you consider every thing was hand sewn, from adding every small jewel, to what must have seem like miles and miles of seams, it was an amazing fete of skill, and strength when you think of how heavy the fabrics and furs were. There must have been an awful lot of seamstresses at work on one gown if it was a ‘rush’ job. Then when you look at Elizabeth I dresses and how ornate they were the work of the dress makers seem even more amazing.

        1. Baroness Von Reis says:

          Dawn 1st,What teedest work it must have been,as they did not have the mordern tools we have now.Being a seamtress would not want to be my trade!Hope you had a great summer. THX Baroness

    2. Bess Chilver says:

      Dawn 1st.
      I am based in Suffolk so Scotland is a bit of a trek. Do you have a group who would be interested in a costume presentation like this?

      Alternatively, I know people in Scotland who would probably be happy to give a talk.

      The clothing of the period is complicated – men and women of high rank would need help to dress. The dress I was wearing is back laced. I can’t lace it up myself at all. But then, most period dress I have made is restrictive and impossible to put on by oneself. My historically based wardrobe starts about 1415 and finishes around 1869 (though I have had garments from the Edwardian period and a WAAF uniform around 1941 – thats the only one I can get into on my own.)

      Bess Chilver.

  3. margaret says:

    i would really love to go on this tour sometime and must arrange it.

  4. cherie says:

    Loved the pictures. Is the sculpture with the glass pillow on the site of the executions?

  5. Emily says:

    What a fantastic trip….I truly hope that you will conduct more tours in the future, as I would love to go on one!

  6. Baroness Von Reis says:

    Looking at the tower were so many people were taken and put to death must have given one a very eary feeling.Did anyone see the chamber ,Queen Anne was held in while she was on trial?? Baroness

      1. Baroness Von Reis says:

        Claire, was the Queens chamber destroyed because Queen Anne was held there,I know all her things were burned.She was just erased, as though she never existed? Hope all is well!! Baroness

        1. Claire says:

          The royal palace was demolished in the 18th century because it had fallen into disrepair, so nothing to do with the fact that Anne had stayed there.

  7. Baroness Von Reis says:

    Claire,Thanks so much for the info, I never new that.Is there going to be aHollween compition?? THX Baroness

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