Pomp and pageantry as St George and the dragon meet again at Wrest Park in Silsoe

St George's Festival at Wrest Park. Picture June Essex/English Heritage
St George's Festival at Wrest Park. Picture June Essex/English Heritage

The country’s biggest St George’s Festival returns to Wrest Park in Silsoe this weekend.

There will be pomp, pageantry and plenty of patriotic flag waving when the English Heritage event welcomes thousands of people over Saturday and Sunday, April 21 and 22, from 10.30am until 6pm.

Entertainment is provided by 275 historical re-enactors and performers spanning 2,000 years to celebrate the country’s patron saint. Between them they will relive the battle which secured his legendary status – the ultimate showdown when gallant St George, resplendent in shining armour and astride his noble steed, takes on his arch nemesis, the fire-breathing dragon.

Among new shows this year will be a Roman battle, an Audience with Queen Victoria, while the joust will also be getting a 13th Century make over this year.

Family favourites such as breathtaking falconry displays, thrilling archery tournaments and medieval foot combat shows will all be making appearances at the event this year. Meanwhile Rebellion! – a display of Royalist and Rebel Troops and a skirmish from 1685 – will be returning bigger and better this year.

Nonsense and frivolity will also be high on the agenda for the weekend, with entertainers including the popular Peterkin the Jester, kids mini battles, storytelling, circus skills, musicians and even hobby horse jousting for all those budding St Georges. A colourful living history encampment will provide a rolling programme of entertainment throughout each day.

For more information call English Heritage Customer Services on 0870 333 1183 or visit www.english-heritage.org.uk/wrest for details of ticket prices