Internationally-renowned historian Alison Weir is to visit the Mary Rose to hold a dinner surrounded by the preserved timbers of Henry VIII’s most famous vessel.
Alison, who has published 25 titles and sold more than 2.7 million books, will host the high-profile event on the Upper Deck – a newly-refurbished space within the shiphall that brings people closer than ever before to the only 16th century warship on display in the world.
Alison, author of Henry VIII: The King and His Court and The Six Wives of Henry VIII, will be visiting the museum at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard on October 11 as the finale to a 10-day Tudor-themed tour for a party of international guests.
She will be taking the 35-strong group on a tour of the exhibition, which includes a fascinating collection of Tudor artefacts from Henry VIII’s flagship, which saw 34 years of service before sinking in 1545.
Best-selling Tudor biographer Sarah Gristwood and historian and author Nicola Tallis will be joining Alison to help host the event.
Other stops on the historical tour include Hever Castle in Kent – the childhood home of Anne Boleyn – and Lavenham, in Suffolk, which is renowned for its Tudor architecture.
John Marston, organiser of the event, said: “The Mary Rose has been chosen as the grand finale of our national tour because it really does have the ‘wow’ factor. People have come from as far as Australia and the USA for this historical tour and we know the Mary Rose is going to be an experience they will remember for their rest of their lives.
“All our guests are history lovers and visiting the Mary Rose will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience for many of them.”
He added: “Alison actually visited the Mary Rose in May and hosted the museum’s very first Upper Deck Dinner for a party of international guests. All the guests were raving about the experience as it really does almost feel as if you are dining on the ship itself.
“We were all so impressed that we thought it would be the most fitting end to this Tudor tour and we are really looking forward to being back at the venue.”
Alison said: “’Our dinner at the Mary Rose Museum was the most spectacular we have ever hosted – a unique, immersive experience in the most stunning setting. The staff were so professional, and we felt so privileged to be dining on a glass balcony overlooking the Mary Rose herself.
“It was an incredible and very special experience. Often, the food at group dinners in historical sites is subsidiary to the experience, but the food served at the Mary Rose Museum is superb. I could not recommend this venue highly enough.”
To find out more about events at the Mary Rose Museum, see www.maryrose.org/venue-hire.
For more information about Alison Weir Tours visit www.alisonweirtours.com.