SEVENTEENTH century warfare was brought to back to life at the weekend with a re-enactment as part of Monmouth School’s 400th anniversary celebrations.

Historical association The Sealed Knot organised a re-enactment of a civil war battle in Monmouth, with around 200 soldiers and two artillery pieces.

This year Monmouth School celebrates its 400 year of educating boys on the same site and have put on a year-long programme of special events.

The re-enactment charity was founded by an Old Monmothian, military historian, Brigadier Peter Young.

On Saturday, September 27, members of the Sealed Knot stood on Monnow Bridge, dressed up in periodical costume and guarding against a group of Royalists who were due to make their way to Shire Hall.

In the evening the Parliament Army soldiers, who came from all over the UK for the event, visited the camp in the school’s playing fields where they shared a traditionally-cooked spicy pork potage.

47-year-old Karen Daniels runs the tavern and joined the Sealed Knot after being inspired when watching one of the re-enactments.

Ms Daniels, who cooked for the whole regiment, about 30 members, said using traditional methods is time-consuming.

“It’s all the preparation and then it takes about three to four hours to cook. It’s nice because the children in the camp help too. Being here is great for their self esteem and confidence.”

The re-enactment group, which was founded in 1968 by Mr Young, today has a membership of more than 4,000 people, making it the largest re-enactment society in Europe.

Simon Jarvis acted as a pikeman on Monnow Bridge with his girlfriend, female musketeer Sam Elson.

Mr Jarvis said: “Today’s gone marvellously. We have had lots of members of the public come down, we’ve been asked lots of questions and had photographs taken.

“I also came down to Monmouth School a few weeks ago to talk to history students at Monmouth School. Events like this is the best way to learn history.”

The Civil War caused tumult in the town - as in many other parts of south Wales.

Monmouth Castle changed hands three times, finally falling to the Parliamentarians in 1645.

When Oliver Cromwell visited in 1646 he ordered it to be "slighted" - demolished - to prevent its military re-use.

The round tower was attacked on March 30 1647 and subsequently fell down.