Step into Robin Hood’s world: spectacular medieval experience set to wow Nottingham this October

Some of the Pageant performers

The Robin Hood Pageant, now in its 38th year, has been completely re-imagined for 2019 and will be staged in a forest setting close to the historic Newstead Abbey for the first time ever while the Nottingham Castle is undergoing its £30m redevelopment.

This spectacular event will be themed around the power struggle between Nottingham’s best-loved outlaw and his arch-nemesis, the Sheriff of Nottingham (#ChooseYourSide).

It will offer a diverse programme of entertainment including dramatic medieval re-enactments, a wealth of costumed period characters, historic demonstrations, hands-on activities, theatre and much more.

The Pageant takes place on Saturday 19 and Sunday 20 October 2019 (11am – 4pm), and discounted early bird tickets are available until Monday 2 September.

This unique and highly immersive experience will see the grounds of the historic Newstead Abbey transformed into a recreation of 12th century Nottingham, filled with the sights, sounds and smells of Robin Hood’s time and offering the chance to come face-to-face with medieval minstrels, artisans and colourful characters, including the legendary Robin Hood himself.

The aim is to depict the life and times of Nottingham’s iconic hero and some of the real historical figures of the time in a captivating and historically accurate manner, celebrating the legend and keeping it alive for future generations.

A diverse range of medieval characters will be wandering the grounds; visitors can get an audience with the great King Richard I and learn about 11th century cures from medieval field hospitaler Fra Justin, while avoiding less savoury characters such as the King’s Executioner and even the Medieval Gong Farmer, complete with cess bucket.

Dramatic re-enactments and combat demonstrations will include The Knights of Nottingham clashing on horseback and on foot, falconry shows and displays from the UK’s leading 12th century re-enactment society, Historia Normannis, which will depict the lives of the Saxon outlaws and their Norman Overlords at the event in a number of interactive camps.

There will also be a wealth of theatre, storytelling and music to entertain visitors, with several bands of wandering Medieval Minstrels, storytelling from the Bard from the Bower and the tale of Robin Hood and the Monk performed by No Strings Puppet Theatre.

With plenty of demonstrations and hands-on arts and crafts activities to get involved with, from candle dipping to arrow making and from pottery to smithing, the event will be showcasing the various crafts and trades of the medieval era in a highly memorable and enjoyable way.

Visitors are also encouraged to eat, drink and be merry, with a variety of food stalls and a licensed bar provided by local brewery Castle Rock Brewery.

Discounted early bird tickets are available now from www.whatsonnottingham.com until Monday 2 September priced at:

  • Early Bird Adult (16+): £13.50 inc. booking fee
  • Early Bird Child (2-15): £9.50 inc. booking fee
  • Under 2s: Free
  • Early Bird Family (2 adults and up to 3 children): £40 inc. booking fee

Cllr Dave Trimble, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture at Nottingham City Council, said: “We’re so glad to be able to host the Pageant at Newstead Abbey while Nottingham Castle undergoes transformation. We know that people from the city and beyond love to come and live the legend of Robin Hood! It’s going to be a great family day out with lots of exciting action to watch as well as activities to take part in and characters to meet. Grab the great Early Bird saving and have your half term plans on the calendar all ready for October.”

Stephen Jackson, interim Chief Executive at Visit Nottinghamshire, said: “This year’s Robin Hood Pageant is set to be a truly enchanting and spectacular event. One of the most engaging ways to learn about a historical period is to experience the sights and sounds for yourself, and what better way to learn about Robin Hood than by stepping into his world? We’re confident that this event will inspire an interest in Robin Hood and his time in future generations as well as helping to keep the legend alive for years to come. This highly immersive and entertaining Pageant is expected to draw huge crowds, and is a great way for visitors to experience the legend of Robin Hood ahead of the Nottingham Castle reopening in 2020.”

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