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About the Magna Carta Armoury

battlefields-124x124As part of the legacy of the Magna Carta 800th Anniversary the Battlefields Trust has produced a toolkit, called the Magna Carta Armoury, to help support local groups and create new ones. This builds on many excellent resources that have been developed.

Many of these explore the meaning of the Magna Carta and its legacy and relevance today. These resources may take the form of exhibitions, walks, books and school materials.

The toolkit should assist communities, local groups, families and organised groups (such as schools, informal education groups, including guides or scouts) to create local Magna Carta or historical groups. These can research the wider historical story around the Magna Carta specific to their locale.

Traditionally the stories of the sieges and battles that led to and followed on from Magna Carta have often been confined to specialist circles.

As a legacy of the 800th anniversary year, the Trust believes it is important that the communities whose local areas were affected and involved with these events are supported, and provided with guidance and ideas about how to reveal, explore, examine and interpret their local histories.

Download the toolkit

The entire toolkit can be downloaded in parts. Each section offers advice on different topics.
The Magna Carta Armoury: Introduction
The Magna Carta Armoury Part 1
The Magna Carta Armoury Part 2
The Magna Carta Armoury Part 3
The Magna Carta Armoury Part 4
The Magna Carta Armoury Part 5
The Magna Carta Armoury Part 6
The Magna Carta Armoury Part 7
The Magna Carta Armoury Part 8

The toolkit

The toolkit provides guidance to individuals and groups so that they are able to engage with Magna Carta locally and sustain an interest in local history beyond the anniversary of June 2015.

The toolkit will consider how to create a group, and then to develop the skills needed to build a community action or awareness group that galvanises people to explore local history and the wider historic environment.

The toolkit is available as a series of PDFs, or as a whole document, hosted on websites that are easy for people to download and use. These can be printed off for use in a school or group.

Included in the toolkit is guidance on:

• How to create and develop a local Magna Carta or Battlefields Trust group
• Acquiring and using skills for research and investigation
• Research different methods and approaches
• How to distil, and unpick the resource material and stories that already exist
• How to ensure that the new research has attractive local angles
• Creating local maps and researching what already exists
• Event ideas and activities that highlight the themes of Magna Carta
• How to create interesting community and educational events
• Creating an education trail for the whole community
• How to engage and work with formal and informal education groups
• How the information gathered can be presented and used to support education


Members of the Trust have delivered lectures across the United Kingdom, often near key battlefield sites. A selection of these can be downloaded below:
John Freeman – Battle of Lewes
Paula Kitching – Beyond Magna Carta 800th

Creating a Magna Carta legacy via educational community development events

As part of the education package there will be communities events dedicated to skills training and embedding knowledge regionally, these will be known as educational community development events.

The events would build on the content of the toolkit to develop community groups further and create a skills base in local communities for exploring local history around the Magna Carta, and potentially other key historical events.

Any comments or feedback will be welcome, and enable the Trust to add to, and make further improvements. Please send these to:

[email protected]

The Magna Carta 800th Project acknowledges the help of the Battlefields Trust and the Magna Carta 800th Anniversary Committee in providing these resources.

The text and research was by Paula Kitching, with an introduction by Edward Dawson. Design by Martin Hoare of the Historical Association.

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