The sun shone and the crowds gathered in their thousands for the annual Youghal Medieval Festival on Saturday, 27th August 2016. The event, now in its 10th year, took place in the stunning surrounds of St. Mary’s College Gardens.
Speaking about the event, organiser Catherine Desmond gave her reaction to the day. “Once again we have seen families of all ages experience our wonderful heritage being brought to life. Now in our 10th year, we have consistently sought to make this event as authentic as possible, but also balance it with fun, traditional entertainment too. Key to the success also we believe is the fact this is a completely free event. We are grateful to our funders in The Irish Walled Towns Network of The Heritage Council of Ireland and Cork County Council who have always enabled this to be the case. We were also thrilled with the number of people who supported us, as we had to reschedule the event due to bad weather last week,” said Catherine.
Taking centre stage at the event was The White Horse Living History Society, a group of living history and medieval combat enthusiasts. Much to the delight of the crowd, the group undertook a series of impressive medieval weapons and amour displays. Kids took part too with a number of brave souls trained to stand in a shield wall and then unleash themselves against the poor unsuspecting Viking warriors!
A ‘back to basics’ approach has always been the aim of the organisers with arts and crafts, pottery making, balloon art and puppet shows high on the list of favourites for the kids.
Guided tours of St. Mary’s Collegiate Church were also on offer as part of the festival and many of the visitors took the opportunity to explore the ‘Raleigh Quarter’ incorporating a town walls walk and graveyard trail.
The Festival is one of the key free public events funded by The Heritage Council of Ireland and it continues to deliver unique and innovative heritage themed activities each year. We are looking forward to 2017 already!!