AMSJ » Abbey Medieval Festival recreates toughest medieval traditions

Abbey Medieval Festival recreates toughest medieval traditions

abbey medieval festival

The Abbey Museum of Art and Archaeology will host the Abbey Medieval Festival in July. Located near Caboolture, north of Brisbane, the Abbey Medieval Festival brings together for one weekend the mystery and magic of life in the middle ages drawing almost 30,000 visitors to the region to enjoy this spectacular event.

Participants including re-enactors, exhibitors, musicians, street performers, and stall holders come from all over Australia, New Zealand and the world and this year the festival welcomes two Jousters from the UK. You will see more than 40 different historical groups comprising a thousand medieval re-enactors representing different time periods and regions, with each group displaying the traditional skills and crafts associated with their culture and era. The festival begins with two spectacular banquets, a knighting ceremony and expands into a week-end of jousting, battling, falconry, feasting, song and dance.

The event caters for visitors of all generations, cultures and backgrounds with diversity and creativity being the common themes. More than ever before, this year’s festival will demonstrate the strength and endurance of the medieval people with four different tournaments devoted to some of the toughest traditions—including the Tournament of Strength and Skill, Turkish Oil Wrestling, Archery and the crowd favourite – the Joust Tournament. The Tournament of Strength, for example, requires skills such as speed, balance, strength, the ability to vault a horse and accuracy with a spear as well as skills with lance and sword.

These skills were a matter of survival during the middle ages. All participants, including re-enactors must conform to the historical specifications for the period being represented and this has been a steadfast rule of this festival since its inauguration in 1989. For example, clothing standards must be adhered to and craft demonstrators must use the tools required for their period.

A taste of what’s new in the 2018 Abbey Medieval Festival A strong feature of this year’s festival will be the ‘Choosing of the Champions’. Our 14th Century groups have decided after 29 years it’s time for the Champion of Champions to be chosen, with a number of groups putting forward their best combatants. The winner will be proclaimed Champion and be honoured as the Banner Bearer. Visitors will witness these noble Knights competing in a Deed of Arms. Then and only then will their skill, strength and fortitude take them to victory and to be crowned as the 2018 Abbey Medieval Festival Champion.

Immersive Edu-tainment for the Family The festival interweaves very unique opportunities for families to come together, wind-down and indulge in vivid and colourful imagination – just what kids love and very therapeutic for adults too! Kids of all ages will clap, cheer, and laugh themselves silly when Domino the Jester takes the stage. Get ready for fantastic feats of juggling, brilliant balancing and mystifying magic. The Abbey House Troupe will tell stories of medieval legends for children at the Pageant Wagon stage.

Lead by a narrator, the troupe will act out scenes from King Arthur, Robin Hood and St. George and the Dragon. And for those interested in the evolution of medieval garb, why not take a tour through the transition of fashion from early period through to the late medieval period as models display the evolution of clothing influenced by construction techniques, politics and status. There is also a wide range of lectures, music, and theatre for those wanting to really learn about what their past might have been.

In the University Pavilion, you will find lectures on topics such as the Medieval Witchcraze, Turkish war tactics, or listen to The Order of the Dracul’s presentation that examines the actual people, places and motivations behind the Game of Thrones series which drew heavily on events during the medieval era. But how accurately were these presented in George R. R. Martin’s stories? The festival transports visitors to the medieval period with a range of street performers and musicians, playing authentic medieval instruments.

Get lost for a moment or a millennium in the busy medieval marketplace, as you browse amongst the colourful tents sampling the wares and food being peddled. You won’t find cans of fizzy drink or hot chips because remember! You’re in the Middle Ages! But you can help yourself to a Venison pie at the Stag Inn, or an ale at The Friar’s Folly Tavern. The festival has been successfully run by the Abbey Museum of Art and Archaeology, located in Caboolture, north of Brisbane for the past 29 years.

The museum has been a major cultural icon in the Moreton Bay Region since 1986. The proceeds from the festival go towards continual expansion, conservation of the Museum’s unique world-collection and extensive educational programs. Festival Tickets Why not grab yourself a Hello-World Festival package and let them do the booking and registration hard work for you!

Alternatively tickets for the Abbey Medieval Festival are on sale currently with early bird prices extending until 30th April starting from $15.50 for children (5 – 15 years), $31.50 for adults. To find out more about the Abbey Medieval Festival’s ticketing, please head to the website. (

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