Prince Arthur Tudor and Katherine of Aragon were married by proxy on 19th May 1499 at Tickenhall Manor, Bewdley.
Negotiations between Henry VII and Ferdinand of Aragon had been long and the marriage had finally been agreed when the Treaty of Medina del Campo was signed on 27th March 1489. The treaty agreed that Katherine’s dowry would be 200,000 crowns. The marriage took a further 10 years to be fulfilled despite a papal dispensation being issued in 1497.
The proxy marriage finally took place at Arthur’s residence in Bewdley, Worcestershire with the Spanish Ambassador Roderigo de Puebla representing the absent Katherine as she was still in Spain. Arthur was accompanied by his household and the Bishop of Lincoln. A letter also stated that both King’s along with the Pope were happy for the union to continue. The Bishop presided over the ceremony and Arthur and de Puebla joined hands to cement the union.
Later Arthur said to de Puebla at the time of the proxy marriage that ‘he much rejoiced to contract the marriage because of his deep and sincere love for the Princess’.
A sweet chestnut tree was planted to commemorate the wedding and although Tickenhall no longer stands the tree has remained over the years.
The couple finally married in a lavish ceremony at St. Paul’s on 14th November 1501.