Looks like a medieval re-enactment went wrong at Warwick Castle in England yesterday. The Telegraph reports:
Hundreds of tourists have been evacuated from Warwick Castle after a burning cannonball fired from the world's largest working siege machine destroyed a medieval boathouse by fire.
Sparks from the cannonball which was fired from the wooden trebuchet ignited the roof of the ancient boathouse causing a blaze on Friday night.
More than 30 firefighters attended the scene after the fire broke out at 5.54pm.
. . .
The Trebuchet Fireball Spectacular is one of the Castle's main attractions.
It was built in 2005, stands 60ft high, weighs 22 tonnes and has been fired at least 6,500 times.
The historic boathouse, which was destroyed in the blaze, dates back to 1896 when the 5th Earl, Frances Greville, had it built to house an electric boat which he powered by batteries charged from the electricity generated by the castle's mill.
A spokesperson for Warwick Castle said the trebuchet would continue firing shots but only dry ones rather than fireballs until the investigation into the blaze is completed.
There's more at the link.
Here's a video clip recorded in 2009 of the trebuchet demonstration at Warwick Castle, firing a flaming ball. The boathouse that caught fire yesterday can be seen in the last frames of the video.
Pity about the boathouse, but it was only a little more than a century old. That's almost brand-new in comparison to the age of the castle itself. They can always rebuild it.