Angelcynn Re-Enactment Society
Re-enactment & Experimental Archaeology
Welcome to our home page. Watch out for new pages as first millennium re-enactors get to grips with third millennium technology!
We are a family-orientated living history society with a wealth of experience gained over several decades.
Typically Angelcynn portrays ordinary life in Anglo-Saxon England, (extending into what is now Southern Scotland but used to be part of the old kingdom of Northumbria). Recently it has had the opportunity to develop two permanent woodland sites within the boundaries of the old kingdom of Northumbria. One now has a sacred pond.(where a small family of wild ducks have taken up residence!), a campsite, willow beds, new coppice woods, woodwork shelter, and an archery range. The other contains the historic Duns Spa (see Wikipedia for details). The Duns site is under major renovation, as the dangerous over-mature Norway spruce forest planted around the Spa had to be felled. So far over 400 mixed British Hardwoods have been planted, with more planned, to more than adequately fulfil the Forestry Commission's requirements. An archery range, campsite and woodworking shelters are planned, together with winter storage for Eadgyth, the Norwegian Faering. A plan to use the wood for "Forest School" activities is being developed.
Angelcynn has a deserved reputation for reaching the highest re-enactment standards. It has worked with the BBC (Meet the Ancestors), Channel 4 (Time Team), and many museums with important Anglo-Saxon collections. Many of the current members were filmed for the Sutton Hoo Introductory video, "The Wearer of the Helmet". We have a special interest in educational events. We work regularly with the Potteries Museum interpreting the Staffordshire Hoard. At Jarrow Hall, Anglo Saxon Farm, Hall and Bede Museum Angelcynn volunteers, in close consultation with the museum, have created an educational woodland walk and Anglo Saxon Rune Quest Trail, and brought the willow bed back under productive management, both to improve the visitor experience. Other projects are being developed.
For clients, we can provide anything from a single costumed interpreter for a talk or demonstration, to a tented encampment showing the life of a Thegn's retinue. We can demonstrate loom and tablet weaving, dyeing, cookery, pole lathing, working in wood, leather working, embroidery, and music. We also demonstrate the weaponry and skills of the warrior classes, as well as Anglo Saxon pagan burials. In suitable locations, we can bring in Eadgyth, or our "magic ship" to demonstrate first millennium sailing and navigation skills. We can even find an Anglo Saxon bishop.
Inter-active activities, "have a go", and themed presentations feature strongly in our work. We have tackled the Old Gods, the Conversion period, gender issues, travel and navigation, the Anglo Saxon year, slavery and social status, Anglo Saxon festivals, the reckoning of time, sickness and health, medicine and healing, food and staying alive, the extended Anglo Saxon family, and even First Millennium helmet design.
We cover most of England and southern Scotland.
If you are interested in us appearing at an event, contact our group leader, Lancelot Robson at l.robson(at)22.gmail.com (Replace (at) with @ ) for a discussion of your requirements and costings. Our events programme for the following year is usually agreed in the winter months, but later bookings, for spring and autumn events, may be possible. A single interpreter or a couple may be available at other times. Winter events normally have to be indoors, or with effective shelter from the elements.
Experimental Archaeology and Projects
We lead special projects and seminars on various aspects of life in the First Millennium. We have our own woodland sites in Longhorsley (Northumberland) and Duns (Scottish Borders) where we undertake experimental archaeology and woodland management, with particular emphasis on coppice crafts and willow production.
We actively encourage new members. Previous re-enactment experience or major knowledge of the period is useful, but not essential. Re-enactors need to be able to develop practical skills, and to be good with the public. We will train you if you have the enthusiasm and desire to be a good re-enactor. If you are interested in finding out more, contact our group leader (at l.robson22(at)gmail.com.( Replace (at) with @ )
Have a look at some of our work by clicking on our themed pages, and also our photo pages (for higher quality images). Teachers and students should find useful information there.