Half-term hijinks at Arundel Castle

Normans and Crusaders in the Keep will take place at Arundel Castle on October 28 and 29
Normans and Crusaders in the Keep will take place at Arundel Castle on October 28 and 29
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ARUNDEL Castle is inviting visitors to turn back the clock and experience 13th century life this October half term.

The Normans and Crusaders in the Keep event is a two-day spectacle, in which visitors will be transported to 1215. It was the year of Magna Carta, when England was ruled by King John, and in this period, Arundel Castle was one of few Royalist strongholds.

Founded in 1067 by Roger de Montgomery, Earl of Arundel, the castle now serves as the ancestral seat and family home of the 18th Duke of Norfolk. One of the its oldest features is the 30ft Norman Motte and Keep, which provides breathtaking views across the River Arun and the South Downs.

Castle manager Bryan McDonald said: “As this year is the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta, it seems apt that our final event of the season takes us back to 1215.

“After an open season filled with exciting and captivating events, Normans and Crusaders in the Keep will be a fitting way to round off the season.”

Characters including Norman knights, crusaders, archers and servants will be bought to life at the event on October 28 and 29. The Raven Tor Living History Group performers will ensure each character shares their own tale of life in the 1200s.

As well as coming face to face with personalities from Arundel’s past, visitors will also be able to enjoy thrilling combat and archery demonstrations. There is even the opportunity for budding knights and crusaders to handle weapons and try on helmets from the period.

More creative visitors will be able to try a hand at ancient crafts such as braiding and weaving, and marvel at the performers’ detailed and historically accurate 12th and 13th century costume.

Arundel Castle is open to visitors from 10am to 5pm, Tuesday to Sunday, until November 1. It will reopen on March 25. Tickets are priced from £9. Visit www.arundelcastle.org for more information.

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