Just jousting at Linlithgow Palace

Return to the days of old when knights were bold and jousting was a popular sport.

Photograph by: Neil Hanna PhotographyLinlithgow Palace
Spectacular Jousting

Some 600 years ago, between 1350 and 1603, tournaments of combat and horsemanship between armoured knights were frequently held in Edinburgh, St Andrews, Perth, Stirling and Leith.

Now, several centuries later, the games are back at Linlithgow Palace this weekend (July 1st and 2nd) as part of a celebration of Scotland’s History, Heritage and Archaeology.

Once again horses, knights and lances will be at the ready for a thrilling festival of horsemanship, pageantry and music as a host of colourful, historic characters battle it out to be crowned the King’s Champion.

The weekend-long display aims to give spectators the chance to see at close range the kind of arms and armour used by the knights as they take to their steeds for shield-splintering exhibitions of strength and horsemanship.

Visitors can also meet try their hand at hobby horse jousting and wander through their camps on Linlithgow’s Peel to learn about medieval life from the knights and their aides.

There will also be opportunities to learn about medieval hunting with the court falconer, witness impressive medieval archery and see what jovial tricks the Court Jester is getting up to.

Photograph by: Neil Hanna Photography

Gillian Urquhart, Events Manager for Historic Environment Scotland, said: “Spectacular Jousting is one of our most popular events, so it’s great to see its return to Linlithgow Palace. Visitors can cheer on their champion and get lost in the full experience of medieval life for a day. It’s entertainment for the whole family and one not to be missed!”

The HES Collections team will also be on site with objects spanning over 500 years of Scotland’s history. Visitors will have the opportunity to put on a pair of white gloves and handle real artefacts.

This year, during Scotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology, Spectacular Jousting will also take centre stage at Caerlaverock Castle, Dumfries and Galloway, on Saturday 29th and Sunday 30th July. With its moat, twin towered gatehouse and imposing battlements, Caerlaverock Castle is a medieval stronghold and another great spot for a day of jousting and family fun.