If you’ve ever wondered what the Abbey Medieval Festival is like, imagine all the colour and pageantry of a big fair in the Middle Ages.
The popular festival, which typically attracts about 30,000 people across two days, returns to Caboolture on July 9 and 10 after a hiatus due to COVID-19.
Organisers and jousters can’t wait for the festivities to begin, offering visitors a fun day out but also an authentic experience of life in the Middle Ages.
Abbey Museum of Archaeology Director Edith Cuffe says the festival is a “feast for the senses”, with an unmatched atmosphere and sense of excitement.
“I just love the atmosphere. I think that’s one of the things that people say when they come to the festival, there’s an incredible atmosphere and it’s like stepping back into history,” Ms Cuffe explains.
Photos: Stephen Archer
(Keep reading for a look at the program highlights)
“We’ll have all the old favourites including the jousting, which is incredibly popular, and on the Sunday at 3pm we have the final championship when the champion for the tournament will be revealed,” Ms Cuffe says
There’s also fighting displays, Turkish oil wrestling, archery demonstrations by Ottoman archers as well as some of the finest archers from the re-enactment group competing to be the champion of the tournament using a traditional English long bow.
“You can sit and watch or have a go at it yourself,” Ms Cuffe says.
There will also be big war machines including the trebuchet and catapults which will be used in the enactment of a castle siege.
|“Visitors can explore the medieval re-enactment camp areas where they can meet and talk to them and learn about Medieval history. They can watch them playing games or doing crafts,” she says.|
People can be entertained by Medieval musicians at Stag Inn while eating a venison pie or rabbit stew or drinking some mulled wine or mead.
Ms Cuffe says instruments being played include a hurdy-gurdy and shawm.
“They are strange instruments that don’t get played today, and there’s dance workshops,” she says.
Those seeking a more intimate venue can enjoy a harpist in the music tent.
If something crafty is more your style, you can watch and try calligraphy and illumination.
There will also be a bustling market to explore where you can buy food which is very different to what’s on offer at any other market around.
The festival site also includes a Kids’ Kingdom – a quieter, time-out space for children to paint a shield, make a princess hat or decorate a crown that’s away from the hustle and bustle of the main festival activities.
Moreton Bay Region Industry and Tourism (MBRIT) Tourism and Investment General Manager Oriana Wyrozebska says festivals and major events, such as the Abbey Medieval Festival, play a significant role in showcasing the Moreton Bay Region to visitors from across South East Queensland, Australia and the world.
|“The Abbey Medieval Festival alone will attract 30,000 visitors to the Moreton Bay Region and inject $1million into the local economy,” Ms Wyrozebska says.|
“The past two years have been incredibly difficult for festival organisers, with the Abbey Medieval Festival sustaining significant financial losses in 2020 and 2021. This is why its return in 2022 is so significant and important. It signals to visitors the region’s resilience and perseverance.
“We hope visitors to the festival take the opportunity to discover more of the Moreton Bay Region.”
With a jam-packed weekend full of activities and entertainment, there is something for everyone to enjoy at Abbey Medieval Festival.
The two-day festival will include re-enactments, music, dancing, lectures, animals, crafts, games, markets, encampments, animals, and tournaments, such as jousting, archery and Turkish oil wrestling.
Here are some of the highlights:
10-10.30am (both days)
Siege of the Castle
10.30-11.15am (both days)
Firing of the Trebuchet
Guided tours of the Abbey Church
Saturday: 12.45-1.30pm and 3-3.45pm
Sunday: 12.45-1.30pm and 3-3.45pm
Gregorian chanting in the church
10.45am – Procession from St Edith’s to Church
11.30am – Gregorian Recital in Museum
Noon- Chant workshop in Church
1.45pm – Chant workshop and recital
Turkish oil wrestling
Saturday: 10.30am and 3.45pm
Sunday: 11am and 3.15pm
Oil Wrestling Pit at the Janissary Barracks
Medieval costume competition
Turkish sheep carrying competition
Dressing of an Elizabethan Lord/Lady
Saturday: 10.45-11.15am and 12-12.30pm
Sunday: 10.30-11am and 2.30-3pm
With thousands of people expected to walk through the gates across the two days, here is some handy information you need to know beforehand.
Due to the huge popularity of the two-day festival, it is highly likely tickets will book out. This means tickets will unlikely be available for purchase at the gate. It is best to book online at on the Abbey Medieval Festival website.
The Abbey Medieval Festival is held at Abbeystowe, an open field near the Abbey Museum of Art and Archaeology in the Moreton Bay Region. The address is 1-63 The Abbey Place, Caboolture.
The gates will open at 8.30am. VIP ticket holders can also enter at 8.30am through the VIP entry.
The festival will finish at 4.40pm each day, with the grounds closing at 5pm.
Free parking is available around Abbeystowe; however, it is limited.
The Wamuran Rural Fire Brigade will assist with parking and will gratefully accept gold coin donations from those willing to support them.
Disability parking is available. Patrons who need to access disability parking must have their permit clearly visible.
VIP parking is available for VIP ticket holders.
Free shuttle buses will be operating between the Caboolture Train Station and the festival site every half hour on both days, commencing at 7.45am.
All visitors will be given a wristband at the gate, which will allow them to enter and exit the festival site freely between the festival grounds, the Abbey Museum and Abbey Church.
For more information, visit the festival website
A new home COVID-19 test, developed from an idea at Caboolture Hospital 10 years ago, has this week been given emergency use authorisation by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).…
Burpengary’s Brooke Cooper has a new opponent and is stepping up a weight but will not change her fight plans for the WBC Super Lightweight Australasian title.…
Ladies who are looking to meet new people and try their hand at a wide range of activities and workshops are being encouraged to join a new social group that has started in Moreton Bay. …