A historical society held a commemorative ceremony on the anniversary of the death of King Harold II at the Battle of Hastings.

The Waltham Abbey Historical Society gathered at the believed site of his burial, the Waltham Abbey churchyard, on Monday, October 14 – the anniversary of the Battle of Hastings.

The ceremony was a replacement for the annual King Harold Festival which was scheduled to be held last week but was cancelled because of “problems with the site”.

About 30 people gathered in the churchyard including historical society members, King Harold Festival committee members and representatives from Waltham Abbey Town Council.

Epping Forest Guardian:

Society members dressed in historical clothing for the ceremony. Photo: U3A Photo Group

Historical society members came dressed in medieval clothing and black canon – a type of catholic priest – robes.

Floral tributes were place on the memorial stone of Harold Godwin, the last crowned Anglo-Saxon king of England.

Harold reigned for less than a year before he was killed at the Battle of Hasting on October 14, 1066, fighting Norman invaders led by William the Conqueror.

Epping Forest Guardian:

Representatives from the council were in attendance. Photo: U3A Photo Group

Tricia Gurnett, chairman of the King Harold Festival Society, said: “As we were unable to hold the festival this year, it was marvellous of the historical society to put on this ceremony to ensure that the founder of what eventually became the Great Abbey of Waltham, King Harold II, the last Anglo Saxon King of England, was remembered on this special day in his town where he was buried.

“Many thanks to them for the idea and for their great enthusiasm.”

Epping Forest Guardian:

King Harold II was the last Anglo-Saxon king of England. Photo: U3A Photo Group