Medieval Trades and Occupations



Our fletcher is a member of the Guild and a master at his trade. Using traditional methods and materials he can fashion an arrow shaft from a block of wood astride his shaving horse. He can speak knowledgeably on the use of materials, the final product and all the associated tales and anecdotes. He tells a good tale but is also a hard task master, as his apprentice will verify.




Have you ever wondered how our ancestors managed without the wonders of modern medicine? Our herbalist will show some of the natural remedies which would have been available in the period and believed to be capable of curing all known ailments from headache to stress. Some remedies are still in use today, others thankfully have been long since abandoned.




All our food is prepared to authentic medieval recipes by our cooks, over an open fire, using produce known to have been available, not only during the 15th Century, but also during the particular season as well. We are not permitted to allow visitors to sample the delicacies prepared, but our cooks are happy to explain the methods and produce used and share their recipes with you.




In an age when people might have difficulties with reading or writing, the scribe is a very necessary member of society. As an educated man, this scribe is able to sell his skills at fairs and markets. He is able to read the letter or document you have received and write your reply for you. If you have the money, he will even illuminate it for you.




While the majority of the population would have worn the brown, black, grey or white of undyed wool, if you could afford it medieval life need not be dull. Concentrating on the dyes in commercial use in the 15th century our dyer can produce a vibrant rainbow of colours from a variety of natural plant materials and various chemical fixers.


Tavern keeper


Our genial tavernkeeper can show you a wide variety of medieval board games of the period. Take care if he offers you a little wager on the outcome though, he has played many times before! He is also highly skilled with the childrens games, such as cup-and-ball.


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Rushes are tall slender plants which grow alongside rivers. Harvested in the summer whilst still green they are dried in a cool place and kept until needed. Easier to work with than willow, they are damped down before use and wrapped in a cloth to 'mellow'. Using wooden formers our basket maker weaves a variety of baskets, pots and containers for household use as well as the occasional sunhat, a necessary item before the invention of sunglasses.

Rushlight Maker

rushlight maker

As soon as the sun went down in medieval England there were no light switches or lamps to turn on and even candles were rare - owned by the wealthy or church. So the lighting options for the everyday family were to sit in the dark or light a rushlight. Of course fires offered light but also burnt through precious wood supplies that would be needed for cooking or for warmth in the winter.




The wool trade was a major industry in medieval times, with the yarn for weaving cloth being spun with a hand spindle. Watch our spinster as she prepares the fleece by combing it and then, with her spindle in one hand and combed fleece in the other,she draws out the fibres and spins them into a fine yarn for the weaver to use.



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