So what are we up to in 2011.

The year kicked off with our usual local, wet & chilly winter training sessions roughly every fortnight. These are interspaced with joint training sessions with an adjoining group (Cestrefeld) and National training weekends. Islip once again hosted our first national training weekend of the year in January. The weather was relatively kind. There was also some LHE training in the hall there, covering some leather working, music, fletching & sewing.

A month later, we had our first national event of the year, at the Yorvic Viking festival (dateline 1014 A.D.) . The weather forecast changed from hour to hour up to the event, but on the day it kept fairly dry, even if rather muddy underfoot for the evening battle at York racecourse. The training in the morning & parade through the streets went off well with large numbers of participants. There was also a small living history exhibit (LHE) in the Guildhall.

Our next national training is towards the end of March, not very far away, near Ashby-de-la-Zouch. At this site we have space for archery practice as well as the usually military training. The wooded area affords the warriors chance to use different battle tactics. The good attendance enables us to try out new techniques for the coming shows & hone older skills. The good sized hall enables us to have craft training or talks if wanted.

Our next confirmed event is at Rufford Abbey, Nottinghamshire on 14th & 15th May. This is run by Eventplan, with folk from lots of different societies depicting a range of eras. It is advertised as a bring & buy for re-enactors, but we also use it as a training weekend & have a small wic to do craft work & cook for us all.

At the end of May, on the Whit bank holiday (28th-30th) we have a national event at Thornton Hall in Yorkshire. The dateline will be 954 A.D.

We have our local show in Tollerton on 11th June in the open space in the village. We have our wic & perform a couple of military displays in the arena by way of thanks for letting us use the space for training. This year, we will follow a dateline of 1069 A.D. This was the period of the 'harrying of the north' by William in reprisal for the uprisings against him. Although Tollerton escaped destruction, some of the surrounding villages were less fortunate & were laid waste by Williams troops.

On 23rd to 24th July we have a very early dateline show (750 A.D.) in Lichfield. This dateline reflects the era of the Staffordshire hoard. Time to dig out some pre- Alfredian kit that we don't get to wear very often.

The beginning of August (6th-7th) brings us a show in Hampshire, at Broadlands. We don't yet have any further details for this event.

We have been told that our local event in Sherwood forest at the beginning of October is to go ahead, but the date has yet to be fixed. It will probably be the first weekend in October. Due to budget cuts, this event wasn't expected to be viable, but we are very happy that it is, being a lovely multiperiod show in a beautiful settling. Once again, this is run by Eventplan.

All we need to do now, is keep our fingers crossed for kind weather, & we'll have a great season.

There are other shows we may attend, but as yet we've not had confirmation. Occasionally some shows get dropped, so do contact us if you are making a special journey.

We'd love to see you at one of our events. Do come & chat, & ask us about what we do. We're happy to talk to folk about life in a period of history that we find fascinating.