HCR104fm visits the Battle Proms 2017
Well summer came around again quickly as did the 2017 Battle Proms series. Just like last year HCR104fm were able to offer 1 lucky listener a pair of tickets as a competition prize and Jon Aveling, Cool Classics presenter and producer went along to see how this year’s series is different from the last. Here is what he found.
So on Saturday 8th July on a lovely summer evening under the Lincolnshire sun I went along to see if Battleproms.com could match their 2016 series this being there 20th anniversary season. I went to the last concert of the series last year and concert organisers wanted to get me to an earlier show this year. The first in the series – can’t get better than that!
Let’s start with ease of access. Parking was easy and effective. Well marshalled with plenty of disabled parking close to the entrance. We arrived about 1730. Gates had opened an hour before. There were efficient ticket booths allowing for speedy access and plenty of toilets in and around the venue. Burghley house itself sets a spectacular backdrop to the whole proceedings
The concert arena itself had a main stage covered in case of inclement weather and next to it a giant screen to enable even those right at the back to see proceedings. To the side of the arena was a huge 13 pounder gun for use in the concert with the other entertainment and events and next to that was an area that had been set up with cannons, mortars and other pyrotechnics all for use at the event. Just like last year this is a family event. People of all ages, families old and young taking their places on the grass area in front of the stage and breaking out chairs, tables and picnic hampers. While they were doing this re-enacters from the Napoleonic era mingled and posed for photographs. There were stalls, food trucks, a beer bus offering free samples(!) and opportunities to purchase appropriate flags of allegiance to wave during the concert finale.
To start with the fantastic Red Devils performed a 9 person sky dive from 10000 feet. All landed safely and they are quite the stunt performers. They can reach speeds of up to 120 mph on descent. After their descent they took the very moving gun salute to commemorate 100 years of the battle of Passchendale in which 600,000 men were killed or injured.