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Glimpse of Viking life in Hemsby

PUBLISHED: 16:09 21 June 2010 | UPDATED: 17:43 06 July 2010

Vikings battle at Hemsby

Vikings battle at Hemsby

Hayley Mace

Fierce battles and a longship abandoned on the beach gave visitors a glimpse of what life might have been like in Viking Hemsby at the weekend.

The village, near Great Yarmouth, hosted its first Viking festival and hundreds of people braved the strong winds and heavy showers to visit the tented village to find out more about the area's historic Danish links.

Fierce battles and a longship abandoned on the beach gave visitors a glimpse of what life might have been like in Viking Hemsby at the weekend.

The village, near Great Yarmouth, hosted its first Viking festival and hundreds of people braved the strong winds and heavy showers to visit the tented village to find out more about the area's historic Danish links.

Re-enactment group the Vikings of Middle England set up a replica village to provide an insight into daily life for the invaders, with costumed characters taking part in a range of activities from making weapons to cooking and even the rather grisly thought of Viking surgery.

The group, who come from Leicester and travel all over the UK re-enacting Viking and Saxon life, gave dramatic battle displays and also visited local primary schools to teach youngsters about the history of their village.

Dags, the group's Jarl (the Danish word for leader), said: “We've been trying to portray what would have been going on in a Viking settlement, and we have everything from an armoury, to a chapel, a surgery and even a calligrapher.

“This is an interesting way for people to learn about the Vikings, they love looking in all the tents to find out what people are doing.”

Norwich-based brand strategy consultant Simon Middleton, who came up with the idea for the festival, said: “We've been very unlucky with the weather but we've still had lots of visitors and the feedback has been really positive.”

The festival is part of a bid by local traders to raise Hemsby's profile following the closure of Pontins in late 2008.


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