Living History

The Garrison is primarily a living history group and as such this makes up a large proportion of what we do at a typical show. So, what does that involve?

Part of our camp kitchen.

Through living history, we aim to use displays, our clothing and our interactions with the public to teach them about history, specifically about life in Wales between c. 1350-70. Some groups do 1st person re-enactment, where each member assumes a particular character or role for the duration of the event. The Garrison instead does 3rd person re-enactment, demonstrating aspects of everyday life but without getting ‘into character’, as this allows us to explain things more fully by discussing other historical eras and modern research with the public.

Within the Garrison, you will be able to participate in a range of living history displays, depending on what you are interested in. You can learn all sorts of new skills with help from existing members – no prior experience is necessary.

A display of textile crafts and tools.

At the typical show, we tend to have four main displays, which you are welcome to get involved with:

  • Weapons, archery & armour display, where we discuss the development of weapons and armour throughout the medieval period.
  • Cookery display, where we cook authentic dishes over an open fire and discuss the differences between modern and medieval food and cookery.
  • Textile crafts display, where we showcase a range of textile craft skills including distaff spinning, fingerloop braiding, naalbinding, knitting, tablet weaving and embroidery.
  • Clothing display, where we show how people dressed in the 14th Century, how their clothes were made and how to ‘read’ 14th Century clothing to learn about the wearer’s gender, age, wealth and marital status.

We also have members who are interested in medieval instruments and music, natural dyeing, leatherwork and woodwork. Beyond this, if there’s anything that you are interested in trying (that is 14th Century), just ask – we’re happy to help you find out more.

If you want to know more about living history with the Garrison, check out the living history tag on our blog. You can also check out our pages on textile crafts and clothing.

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