A good question indeed. Training, experimentation with new weapons (more on that later) and a big event at York, where Y Ddraig was a huge part of what will undoubtedly become a long-remembered victory. Have a look at a video, made at the Viking parade, where Y Ddraig were right at the front of the line:
The Jorvik Viking festival march of 2019 well worth the wait 🙂
Posted by Joe McLaughlin on Saturday, 23 February 2019
Our weekly training sessions have been taking place as usual and we have had a few new faces. We hope they remain a pernament presence! On the training, we have been experimenting with a new weapon, previously unseen in our reenactment society. What do I mean by that? Well, it is not like we have discovered a new type of weapon, that was not known to science before, and only recently discovered at a Norwegian ship burial site… What it actually is, are old trusty javelins. Only this time, this missile weapon has a twist. In the Vikings society, javelins are a “display only” weapon at the moment, which means they cannot be used in competitive combat. This severely limits their popularity, but also it robs our battle of a missile fase. Seeing as there is no point in bringing javelins to a competitive battle, warriors don’t bother bringing them at all. We are now working towards intruducing a new type of javelin- one which is safe to use in competitive combat. Hopefully, this will help us transform our battles.
The reason we do not allow them at the moment, is that they are too large and heavy, to be used safely. If a javelin we use currently would hit your chest, for example, it would have enough force to break ribs and potentially penetrate and actually stick in your body. At the moment, we experiment with lighter, smaller javelins, which have rubber tips instead of metal ones. Experiments so far are going well, but it is still a long way before we figure this one out!
More javelin training tonight, testing how it would work on the battlefield best. Also end of the month means it's the combat competition! Results and videos for that will be posted through the week. ⚔️#vikingreenactment #vikings #training #shieldwall #darkage #stokeontrent #staffordshire
Posted by Friends of Y Ddraig on Monday, 25 March 2019
At the end of February, Y Ddraig have participated in the Yorvik Viking Festival at York, which was hosted by our fellow societyt Regia Anglorum. It is a hugely fun event and one of the biggest in our calendar as well, thanks to it’s large numbers. Year on year, Regia Anglorum had managed to beat us in competitive combat. This being their event, we are using their combat rules, which do put us at a disadvantage, but it was largely due to Viking’s society own mistakes, that we have lost the competitive battles each time. This year was different and we have managed to gain a victory- the battles were hard and we have learned our lessons from past years. It was not an easy victory (those are never fun anyway), but it was well-earned and we enjoyed it greatly. Year 2019 will forever be remembered as a crucial one for the York battles, where we have finally managed to beat the Hosts at their own game.
Y Ddraig and it’s warriors were a huge part of this victory and we celebrated in style! As always, there was also time for some Dark Age shopping. A visit to the Trader’s Market is always fun and I recommend it to all. Where else will you get all your bling, your drinking horns, your cloth, bits for arrow making, a new axe… It’s all there!
As always at York, there was a centre-piece battle in the evening, which was fully scripted as part of a wider show. Show fights are always fun to watch and do, because they are essentially a movie set, played out live for the public. The fights are nig, dramatic, and all effort is put into making them look good and exiting. Not to mention, there is an impressive firework display at the end!
All through March, it has been training time- in preparation for the season ahead, with our next scheduled show coming over Easter weekend. To finish off- a super cool short film of a burning shield, which got damaged beyond repair in combat and was subsequently sacrificed to the gods. What a send off!
Our member Styrmir had his shield destroyed at Jorvik so we decided to burn it at our campfire, little video of how it looked! #jorvikvikingfestival #jvf19 #vikingfestival #vikings #vikingreenactment
Posted by Friends of Y Ddraig on Friday, 1 March 2019
Until next time- Ubbe Thorgilsson, signing off.