In a year when Bury St Edmunds marks the 800th anniversary of the decision by the knights to force King John to sign the Magna Carta we look back at the Bury St Edmunds Magna Carta Pageant in pictures.
A special supplement was drawn up by the then West Suffolk Newspapers priced at one shilling and sixpence in June 1959.
It showed pictures of the massive open air performance depicting the various events which surrounded the enshrining of the common man’s right to law,
Mounted riders and massed soldiers gathered at the Abbey Ruins while another scene told the story of John Winthrop in Massachusetts who used some of the principles of Magna Carta as the basis of the rule in the new colony in 1636.
Players here were members of the local USAF bases.
The glossy black and white pull out also depicts historic events in the life of the town: Danish invaders, King Canute ordering the building of the great new church and Young King Edmund acclaimed by his people.
A Magna Carta commemoration service was staged with massed choirs and a Suffolk Regiment Band with acclaimed guests including the Lord Mayor of London, Australianm High Commissioner and the Master of the Rolls.
Some 55 years later Bury will again honour the town’s links with the Magna Carta which was in fact signed in 1215 (CHECK) at Runneymede.
The Lincoln copy of the document is on display at St Edmundsbury Cathedral in May and there is to be a light and sound trail through the town to allow the people of Bury St Edmunds to once again mark this historic event.