Thousands flocked to The Loxwood Joust at the weekend to experience the fun, laughter and mediaeval revelry in the Loxwood Meadow.
Once again the mediaeval festival had added even more excitement and entertainment to the festival for 2017, with Henry the Heartless swallowing swords, Lullaby Leesa and her amazing puppet show with a giant crocodile, Oddesy Blacksmiths demonstrating the skills of a blacksmith and Gilbert Savage, aka the executioner demonstrating his new ‘toy’ – the mediaeval torture rack. In addition a third witch provided even more magical mystique to the witches’ wood and HAODS were strolling, entertaining and getting the audience to participate in maypole dancing and sketches.
The sound of thunderous hooves filled the jousting arena as the four daring and dashing Jousting Knights ran the tilt with speed and accuracy. Battling it out for victory, both in the saddle and on the ground with skilful sword fights, the crowds cheered the good and bad alike. With Sir Hector of Horsham and Sir Kenneth showing shameful displays of cheating and breaking all the rules of chivalry, Sir Thomas of Loxwood and Sir Luke captivated the crowds with their talent and fair play. All four very talented Jousting Knights displayed breath taking horsemanship and quick witted banter as the crowds cheered, laughed, booed and hissed as Sir Hector of Horsham won the tournament in the blazing sunshine.
With the weather on Saturday providing a couple of quick smatterings of raindrops and one swift downpour , the crowds and mediaeval characters however were not deterred and the 120 fully armoured battling knights continued to fight for victory through the rain.
Rose from Crawley in West Sussex said “Having come to the event for the first time last year, my daughter and family have flown over from Vienna especially for this year’s Joust. There is just something for everyone. It is educational, as well as fun and my grandsons aged 8 and 10 have just spoken to an archer, who has talked and explained all about Cross Bows to them. Their comment was Awesome!”
The Sunday then proved to be glorious all day. Visitors and participants all enjoyed the sunshine and the Zulu, the yellow billed kite took the time to soak up the sun on the Out on a Wing falconry stand! With something for young
and old alike, the 15th Century was again brought to life and families were captivated by the fast-paced, full programme of mediaeval pageant. Depicting a time where lives were harsh and hearts were passionate, the living history village and authentic recreation of a mediaeval battle which was steeped in local history, captivated the imagination.
With mediaeval weapon demonstrations, cannon fire, archery battles, falconry displays, traders and hawkers in the Mediaeval Market Place and talks from a mediaeval cook, housewife and the executioner, there was a full day of activities to experience. In addition visitors to the event were also wowed by the soothing voices of the Emmy nominated Mediaeval Baebes.
Maurice Bacon, the event’s organiser said “We have had an amazing first weekend. Both the participants and visitors young and old have really had fun. It is good to see so many adults and children getting in to the spirit of this mediaeval world and asking the characters so many questions to find out more about mediaeval life.
He continued “The Loxwood Joust always adds different experiences each year and the feedback for this year has been amazing. We have had a real mix of new and return visitors and our reputation for being one of the most, if not the most authentic mediaeval event for all the family is clearly spreading. We love to see and hear the visitors really enjoying themselves in the Loxwood Meadows and we are really looking forward to next weekend’s festival on the 12th and 13th August.”