is a winter event especially for those people who choose to re-enact early
medieval European lifestyles.
There are two ideas that are central to the Gathering; the first is that the event has a theme based on a particular time and location. This provides a rationale explaining why a fairly varied group of people would get together in the first place, in an historical context. Previous years themes have included the funeral celebrations of an Old Prussian tribal leader (c.800 AD); the winter encampment of the Great Heathen Army at Repton, (873-874 AD); a blood-feud between two Icelandic chieftains (c.950 AD); and the rebellion of the northern English against the Normans after 1066 AD.
The theme for this years event is the struggle between the men of Mumman (modern-day Munster, in Ireland) against the invasions and raids of the Ostmen; the sea-kings of the Northen Way and the Dan-Mark (Norway & Denmmark) around the year 950 AD. More about the theme here...
The second idea central to the Gathering is that the organisation and conduct of the event is fairly relaxed. That is to say, what happens at the Gathering is to a large extent dependant upon the people who attend.
The organisers of the Gathering provide the camp site, the firewood, some challenging and unusual competitions, trophies, an event token, and a central point of organisation. If you want to come along and run a workshop, do it. If you want to make a period bread-oven at the Gathering and sell the bread you bake, do it. Live the history; share the experience with others, and have a lot of fun doing it. For in the end, that's what the hobby is all about.
With only one activity being run each morning and each afternoon, there's plenty of time to simply relax, catch up with friends, and enjoy the natural beauty of the area.
In fact, it's the unhurried pace of the event that people seem to like most about the Gathering...