Gruesome Re-enactment is part of Doors Open Day

Tuesday 7 September 2010

A free and exciting re-enactment of Mary Queen of Scots visit to Aberdeen to quell an uprising in 1562 is being held at the Tolbooth Museum, Castle Street, as part of Doors Open Day on Saturday 11 September.

Sir John Gordon of Findlater, the son of the Earl of Huntly took to the field against Mary which led to a battle between royal forces and those of Sir John and his father, the Earl of Huntly at Corrichie on 28 October 1562.

Sir John was defeated and his father, the Earl of Huntly, died. The earl's body was taken to Aberdeen's Tolbooth where it was disembowelled and embalmed before being sent to Edinburgh and tried in parliament for treason.

It was determined that Sir John should be sent to the Tolbooth where he was tried and eventually beheaded in the Castlegate on 02 November 1562.

On Saturday visitors to the museum will have the chance to watch the last encounter between Mary Queen of Scots and Sir John as he prepares for his execution.

The re-enactment will take place at 11am, 12noon, 2pm and 3pm.

This Sunday [12 September] is the last day visitors can go along to the museum before it closes for winter.

The Tolbooth is one of the oldest buildings in Aberdeen and one of the best preserved 17th-century Scottish gaols. Built between 1616 and 1629 the museum was a prison for those standing trial in the adjacent court or awaiting punishment.

The museum now houses models, displays and interactive exhibits which tell the history and development of crime and punishment and local history.

Exhibits range from the original 17th-century column of Aberdeen's Mercat Cross to medieval instruments of punishment like the 'maiden', an early version of a guillotine.