On the evening of 16th July, a service was held in the chapel at the ruins of Bradgate Park to commemorate Lady Jane. It was the final event held to celebrate ‘The Queen of Bradgate Park.’
Other ‘Queen of Bradgate Park’ events included, free guided tours, dusk tours, a talk about Jane by Peter Tyldesley (Park Director), Meet the Executioner, 1000yrs of History, a ghost walk and a Hysterical History Comedy Night.
On arrival at the ruins, guests at the service were greeted by Lady Jane’ great grandfather, Thomas Grey (played by Jed Jaggard), who told us about the great house he had planned for Bradgate Park and asked us to imagine what it would look like when complete.
We entered the chapel to music from Fabula Musica (mezzo-soprano, Motje Wolf and Sarah Wilander on harpsichord).
The service started with Richard Trethewey (Rector of St Peter’s, Glenfield and All Saints’ in Newton Linford) welcoming us to Bradgate.
I then read the Eulogy to Jane. It was a very moving experience speaking about Jane at the place where she grew up. You can read the eulogy here.
Reverend Tretheway then gave a brief introduction to the service and the background to the 1552 prayer book. It was a similar service to that heard by Queen Jane on Sunday 16th July 1553 in the chapel at the Tower of London.
‘Turn thy face away from our sinnes (O Lorde) and blot out all our offences.
Rente your heartes, and not your garmentes, and turne to the lord your God: because he is gentle and mercyful, he is pacient and of muche mercy, and suche a one that is sory for your afflictions.
Amende your lyves, for the kingdom of God is at hand.’
The service also included readings by Peter Tyldesley and Suzanne Gamble.
It was especially poignant when Reverend Tretheway said:
As Reverend Tretheway lit a lantern from one of the candles at the front of the chapel and proceeded outside, Motje started to sing ‘Oh Death Rock Me Asleep’ (a poem attributed to Anne Boleyn) and one with very fitting lyrics for the occasion.
We then followed Reverend Tretheway to the lake. Here he read the final prayers from the 1552 funeral service.
‘ALMIGHTIE God, with whom doe lyve the spirites of them that departe hence in the lord, and in whom the soules of them that be elected, after they be delivered from the burden of the fleshe, be in joye and felicitie: We geve thee hearty thankes, for that it hath pleased thee to deliver Jane our sister out of the myseryes of this sinneful world: beseching thee, that it maye please thee of thy gracious goodnesse, shortely to accomplyssh the noumbre of thyne electe, and to haste thy kingdome, that we with this our sister, and al other departed in the true faith of thy holy name, maye have our perfect consummacion and blisse, both in body and soule, in thy eternal and everlastyng glory. Amen.‘
We then scattered roses and rose petals in the lake.
Thank you to Michele and the other staff at the Visitors Centre for arranging such wonderful events to celebrate Jane.
You can read the whole service – Queen of Bradgate Park Rose Petal and Remembrance Service.