Sandfields Pumping Station – Lichfield Greenhill Bower

#Sandfelds Pumping Station, page 42 of the  page 42 of the Lichfield Bower Programme

The Bower is well known in Lichfield, England and nearby areas. It is a festival held each spring on a bank holiday. It is about 800 years old. A statute of Henry II of England (1134-1159) ordered that all men capable of bearing arms should be inspected by the magistrates. Since there was no standing army, this was a way to find out how many men could fight in a war. The men would then march through the streets and retire at a “Bower House” for roast beef and spirits. This ensured a good turn-out.

Sandfields Pumping Station from above

Today the Bower has many competitions such as tombolas. There are markets which sell local produce. The main attraction is a large funfair.

The Origins of the bower go back many centuries to the time of Henry II (1145-1189). At that time England had no standing army and when the King needed troops to defend the realm he had to raise them by mustering all the able bodied men between the ages of 16 and 60 throughout the kingdom.

To enable him to do this Henry set up a Commission of Arraye (an early example of quango) which had every year to submit to the king, a return of all the men-at-arms available throughout the kingdom. To do this they ordered every city and town to hold a muster of fighting men on one day in the year and to send the figures in to the Commission of Arraye. These musters were known as the Courtes of Arraye, and in Lichfield the Courte if Arraye was always held on Whit Monday.


About Morturn

Historian – Photographer – Filmmaker Retired construction professional with a passion for public, social and industrial history. I believe in equality, dignity and integrity for all. Don’t like people who try to belittle the ambitions of others. I am of the opinion that my now life belongs to the whole community and as long as I live, it is my privilege to do for it whatever I can. I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work the more I live.
This entry was posted in Sandfields Pumping Station and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s