Attend one of Northern England’s most thrilling spectacles as armoured knights engage in full combat on horseback.

Witness the drama, pageantry and passion as masterful knights and their trusty steeds battle valiantly to defend their honour, in this gripping 15th Century Jousting Tournament. Come and see who will be victorious in Alnwick Castle’s authentic display of chivalry and courage!

In between these spectacular performances, why not discover more of medieval England? See what else we have on during the Joust of the North below.

This incredible spectacle takes place between the 1st and 5th of August.
Please note:
  • Sensible footwear is required (trainers or walking boots are advisable) due to the steep and uneven surfaces leading to and from the Arena.
  • Alcohol or glass is not permitted under any circumstances.
  • This outdoor event is weather dependent. In the unlikely event that cancellation occurs, a provision of 2 demonstrative talks will be allocated as a replacement. 

Jousting Terminology Words you might hear during the Joust of the North

Attaint - When a lance strikes a target but does not break.
Bar - A line drawn on the shield at its mid point.
Barricade - When a lance tip has swung too far to the left of the oncoming opponent. If the lance breaks as a result it is not considered a point-scoring break.
Caparison - The cloth that covers the horse.
Coronel - The shaped cap placed on the tip of the lance.
Knight Marshall - The main referee in the tournament.
Laissez Aller (French) - Meaning 'Lets go'. Called for the Jousters to charge.
Lance - The long weapon used in jousting.
Lists - The arena where jousting tournaments take place.
Melee - Any of a variety of mounted combat performed as a sporting competition rather than a battle.
Tilt - A barrier, introduced in the 14th century, to prevent jousting collisions.

How to score a joust?

The system of scoring in the medieval period differed from tournament to tournament. Rules were layed down by the Marshal of the tournament and agreed by all participants before hand.

Blows recorded on jousting cheques. With solid lances the aim is to be as accurate as possible.

Points are awarded for lances broken on the shield or the helmet only.
The days champion will be the jouster who scores the most points.

3 Points - For a lance broken on the helm of an opponent.
2 Points - For a lance broken to the shield, above the bar.
1 Point - For an attaint.
1 Point - To each jouster for a coronel to coronel strike. This sometimes happens when lances are at the same level.
0 Points - For blows; below the bar, on the breast plate, on the shield, and the removal of a crest.

Points may be awarded for good horsemanship and lance control.

Also on during the Joust of the North

Zooted Jester Show

Birds of Prey Displays

Harry Hotspur the Rolling Horse

Event Dates

The event is taking place on dates highlighted in red.