Joust an amazing weekend

TEST OF SKILL: Knights on horse back hone their fighting technique.

TEST OF SKILL: Knights on horse back hone their fighting technique.

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The air brimmed with excitement as the knights mounted their horses, faced one another, jousts in hand, and began to gallop.

This was not a flashback to 15th century England but a scene many witnessed when spending the bank holiday weekend at Hedingham Castle in Castle Hedingham.

More than 4,000 visitors flocked to see the Knights of Destrier do battle on Sunday and Monday and also explore the medieval fair which was being staged.

Simon Orr, the castle’s manager, said the event had been a huge success.

“It was a fantastic two days and the knights were incredible,” he said.

“They are clad in full steel armour and they really do it for real.

“There were collective gasps from the audience as they started jousting – they could sense how much they wanted to win.”

Mr Orr said the event, which also included a falconry display, maypole dancing, archery and donkey rides, had helped the venue hit a record attendance.

“We had 2,500 people on Monday and it was so busy we had to close the gates at 1pm,” said Mr Orr.

“It was disappointing to have to turn people away but we had to, otherwise there would have been too many people to enjoy it.

“There was a terrific atmosphere and there was a real sense of excitement throughout.”

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