Battles and boat-burning as Vikings descend on Norfolk coast

Sheringham Viking Festival. Picture: Ian Burt

Sheringham Viking Festival. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

Families turned out in force in Sheringham to watch a horde of horned helmet-wearing Norsemen stage pitched battles in the town centre as part of this year's Scira Viking festival.

Now in its fourth year, the event is run by Sheringham Carnival committee members and festival founder, local artist Colin Seal.

This year's programme kicked off at the town's seafront Mo Museum on Saturday, with a screening of a Viking documentary and a presentation by Greta Lynggaard, from Denmark, who demonstrated the art of spinning Viking-style wool from rare wild musk oxen.

The fun continued into the afternoon, with Gorleston-based Viking re-enactors Wuffa demonstrating manoeuvres before acting out a battle scene depicting a rebel faction kidnapping a shield maiden.

The group, which was founded four years ago by David Bracey and his son Gareth, has more than 30 members aged from five to in their 60s, who travel to weekly meetings from as far afield as Norwich, Lowestoft and Lincolnshire.

Wuffa members have appeared in films and documentaries including this year's Michael Bay Transformers sequel, The Last Knight.

Mr Bracey, who lives at Lowestoft, said group members looked forward to taking part in the Sheringham festival.

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'There's a fantastic atmosphere,' he added. 'The crowd is incredibly enthusiastic and appreciative and the whole town gets involved.'

Group member Mark Lee, who lives at Norwich, makes Viking-inspired leather bracelets, cuffs, belts and pouches for other re-enactors.

He said: 'We all really enjoy coming to Sheringham.

'It's great to see all the children joining in with their shields and swords.'

Mr Seal said the day's programme had attracted large numbers of people, with hundreds turning out for the evening parade, which set off from Station Road, winding its way through the town for a boat-burning ceremony on the beach.

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