Middle Ages return in stately setting for bank holiday fun

A MEDIEVAL encampment will be set up in the Grade One-listed grounds of Wentworth Castle over the May bank holiday weekend.

The castle gardens in Stainborough, near Barnsley, are set to host a three-day-long living history camp complete with military displays and cookery demonstrations.

A spokesman for Wentworth Castle Gardens said: "Learn how people worked and relaxed 500 years ago as you walk around the camp and see men and women from the Clarence household displaying their skills and crafts, before they enjoy themselves with dancing and games.

"Visitors are more than welcome – and at times encouraged – to interact and talk to the re-enactors about anything going on during the day."

The gates will open at 10am each day and the first arena display on the lawn, with medieval games and peasant dances, will be held an hour later.

At 1pm "Camp Lunch" will take place, at which visitors can see a medieval meal being cooked.

The spokesman added: "The camp cooks will be available to talk about any aspect of the medieval kitchen, food and meals that are being prepared.

"At 3pm each day there will be the second arena display of military life in the 15th century. Be warned, this could be a noisy session - starting with weapon practice and combat displays before moving onto firepower displays of bow versus handgun. Sunday and Monday also has the added benefit of a crossbow display."

Fundraising work is also continuing for the restoration of the derelict Victorian glasshouse.

The full restoration is expected to cost more than 3.7m. Of that, 1m is still required, which would enable Wentworth Castle Trust to apply for further Heritage Lottery funding of 2.5m.