Rolling Back the Years with St Giles Church, Durham
St Giles Church, which first hosted worship at least ten years before Durham Cathedral is going back in time as part of its ongoing 900th anniversary celebrations.
St Giles Church, in Gilesgate, Durham, will host a Medieval Fair on Saturday September 8 between 10am–5pm, celebrating nine centuries at the heart of community life.
The Reverend Doctor Julia Candy, Curate at the church, said: “The event will make the point that the church has been serving the community for nine hundred years and will be there for the next nine hundred years. It will always be there.
It will be a chance for people to see what has stayed the same in that time and what has changed. For instance, there is a woman in a dog collar and the services now take place in English rather than Latin, a language people would not understand today.
The event is about helping people to realise that the church is not just about the clergy but that it’s a whole community thing.”
Louisa Gidney, of Tow Law, County Durham, will be one of those people appearing at the event with her livestock, including chicks and her mule Frances. Louisa, an archaeologist who runs Rent a Peasant, will spend the day talking to people about life in Medieval England.
She said: “My work is about helping people to engage in history and animals are part of the church’s history. At times of insurrection, where else would you take your animals to keep them safe when the Scots were marauding but a large stone building with a firm door?
Animals were a big part of everyday life. For example, one of the things I do is spinning, which helps people make the connection between animals and community life. People tend to think of knights in shining armour but there were large numbers of peasants making sure they were fed and clothed.”
The fair will feature:
- Re-enactment - Dunholm Living History will bring the medieval ages to life with authentic tents featuring crafts including spinning, weaving, dye samples, shoemaking, bone working, weapons and equipment
- An opportunity for adults and children to try on chain mail, helmets etc
- Combat displays
- Training of ‘new recruits’ – an opportunity for children to pretend they are in the Baron’s household
- Sessions to give an insight into textile production – spinning, dyes, braiding and the chance for adults and children to have a go
- Petting lambs, free range chicks and a friendly mule called Francis
- Blacksmith Adrian Wood will use traditional blacksmith techniques to create contemporary and innovative designs
- Wullfengrimm will perform music throughout the day using traditional instruments
- Traditional stories to entertain young and old. Told by members of the Gala Theatre Stage School
- Ye Olde Stocks
- Hog Roast
- Ye Olde Medieval Bar, selling bottles of traditional brewed beer and the St Giles 900 label, brewed especially for the celebrations
- Arts and Craft Fair
- Woodcraft Folk will provide an opportunity for children and young people to take part in craft activities throughout the day to build their self confidence.
To Read More - Please See The Press Release
Photo by: Keith Blundy / Aegies Associates
To purchase images from the various 900 year celebration events click here
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