Costumes for Edmund and Mary
Actress Hatty Ashton as Mary Tudor with volunteers from Bury St Edmunds Guildhall who made the costumes.
Bury St Edmunds and Beyond – the town’s tourism brand – wanted to create authentic costumes for arguably the town’s most famous characters – Saint Edmund and Mary Tudor, Queen of France – ahead of the Abbey of St Edmund’s 1000-year anniversary.
Volunteer costumers from Bury St Edmunds Guildhall sprung into action and have spent hours recreating costumes for Saint Edmund and Mary Tudor.
The costumes will be used in tourism photo shoots and at events in the town for next year’s Abbey of St Edmund 1,000 anniversary celebrations.
They will also go on display at Bury St Edmunds Guildhall at various times in the year (see the Bury St Edmunds Guildhall website for opening times)
Sue Warren, Brand and Marketing Manager for Bury St Edmunds and Beyond, said: “The costumes created by the volunteers at Bury St Edmunds Guildhall have exceeded my wildest expectations. They are absolutely beautiful and look authentic. The volunteers have spent many hours researching and making both costumes, much of which has been stitched by hand.
“The costumes will be able to be used in photos, events and in exhibitions in the town for years to come and we are so grateful to the volunteers for all their hard work.”
Bury St Edmunds takes its name from King Edmund, the original Patron Saint of England and King of East Anglia, whose shrine at the Abbey of St Edmund was once one of the most famous and wealthy pilgrimage sites in England. While Mary Tudor, Queen of France, was Henry VIII's favourite sister.
Mary died, aged 37, at Westhorpe Hall, Suffolk, on 25 June 1533 and she was first buried at the Abbey of St Edmund on July 21 1533 but when the abbey was dissolved her remains were moved five years later in 1538 to St Mary’s Church, Bury St Edmunds. You can find her very simple tomb to the north side of the altar.
Marilyn Lee, Trustee of Bury St Edmunds Guildhall and organiser of the volunteer costumers, said: “The Guildhall costume team really rose to the challenge and have produced wonderful results. My role was merely as a facilitator, as the team members are all so skilled, it has been a pleasure to watch these costumes coming to life in their hands.”
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