3,000 re-enactors to restage Battle of Hastings

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For the first time since the Anglo-Saxons bowed to Norman might at the Battle of Hastings, 1066, the annual re-enactment show is within a missile's throw of properly imitating the original.

More than 3,000 fighters, a three-fold increase on the previous "Mega Battle" of 2000, are massing in full war dress this week to play out a specially extended script, to commemorate the best-known date in British history.

Men are marching from Yorkshire and Kent, and from Cambridge and Leicester.

But in a revisionist twist, the ranks of the Norman, Breton, Flemish and Saxon armies are also swelled this year by an army of multicultural mercenaries who could well give King Harold the upper hand.

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