Langton by Wragby, Magna Carta Celebrations 2015


On July 31 an emissary on a bicycle, Steve Brown, the vicar's husband of Odiham in Hampshire, delivered by hand to the Vicar and members of St Giles, Langton by Wragby, a Magna Carta Anthem manuscript which he is delivering to each of the original Magna Carta towns. Steve is being sponsored on his bike ride to raise funds for the refurbishment of Odiham Church. For more details on the Magna Carta events in Odiham see our Links section.

The Magna Carta Trust, Sustrans (National Cycle Network) and Church House are all involved to help establish ahead of next year's celebrations a trail, which connects each town with an original link to Magna Carta. The plan includes proposals to expand the National Cycle network to promote the cultural heritage of Magna Carta and cycle visits to Parish Churches and Cathedrals.

Stephen Langton as depicted in stained glass in Langton ChurchThe cycle trail began in Odiham, home of King John's castle, from where King John set off to meet his Barons and reluctantly agree to Magna Carta. The trail continued from Odiham to Winchester, Salisbury, Oxford, Hereford, Durham, Lincoln, Langton by Wragby (Birthplace of Archbishop Stephen Langton), Bury St Edmunds, St Albans, Runnymede (Wraysbury & Egham), London (Temple) and Canterbury; before returning to Odiham on August 9.

Malcolm Archer, Director of Chapel Music at Winchester College, has composed the Anthem, which is published by the Royal School of Church Music. The anthem is to be played and sung by organ and choir in celebration and commemoration of the agreement of Magna Carta on the meadows of Runnymede on June 15th 1215, in thanks for the liberty and democracy we enjoy today.

lt is set to the text Veni, sancte spiritus, written by Archbishop Langton who was Archbishop at the time of Magna Carta in 1215, and one of the principal signatories. Stephen Langton is depicted in the stained glass window in Langton by Wragby Church shown here. He was also a key figure in the dispute between King John and Pope Innocent 111, a contributing factor in the crisis that led to the issuing of Magna Carta.

A new 'Magna Carta' walk has been devised between Lincoln and Langton village.Details of this interesting walk may be found at (...)