Tuesday, 27 April 2010

IronFest 2010 - The blokes


IronFest commenced in 2000 to celebrate the centenary of the production of steel in Lithgow, a small town just west of the Blue Mountains. Attending out of curiosity, I was dumbfounded by the passion and skill on display. The three-day programme was eclectic, fascinating and a photographer's delight.


Out on the grassed arena, a complete medieval tent village had been erected, swirling with denizens all dressed and ready to walk the talk. On the left was the St George's Day Jousting Tourney, on the right the Battle of Lithgow between the French and the English, and in the centre there was armed combat and archery competitions. Behind the scenes, smithies toiled to ensure that all combatants were armed and protected.


As the French general contemplates the fate awaiting his small band of gallant soldiers, the mighty English army masses across the river with their rows of musketeers and phalanx of artillery. As the battle progresses, soldiers from both camps crumple, until the gallant general withdraws under superior firepower.


The plaintive sounds of the medieval French bagpipe, the chabreta, pipes the vanquished from the field of battle, until the appointed time tomorrow, when they do it all again.

15 comments:

Lois said...

Incredible! It looks so interesting. I love that first shot Julie!

Magpie said...

This is amazing...so full of color and movement. Wonderful. We have something here called the Renaissance Fair. There's always great fun to be had there too.

TheChieftess said...

A lot of historical areas in the US also have re-enactments...it's such a fun way to celebrate history...Love the color and composition of your shots!!!

Birdman said...

What a great photo essay!

J Bar said...

It looks like it was a brilliant day.
Sydney - City and Suburbs

Ann said...

You went! I wondered if you did. Must try and get my act together for next year. Are we going up to Paddington this weekend (email me).

brattcat said...

Beautiful story telling here and that French general...ooo la la.

Marka said...

Re-enactments are always a grand time.

Peter said...

what colour - what action - superb!

Joan Elizabeth said...

Well you did have a busy weekend! I contemplated going because I figured there would be lots to photograph but we weren't feeling well so that put paid to the idea for another year.

Vicki said...

The colour in these shots is great. It looks like a fun excuse for dress-ups.

Julie said...

It was a fun excuse for just soooo many things! I already have another 'living history' weekend in my diary for early July.

diane said...

Talk about frozen in action in the first shot. It is such a colourful day. They really get into it big time. It must have been fun to witness.

Clytie said...

Absolutely mesmerizing! I was fascinated by this series of photos - and I love the action shot at the top! I'm so glad you had the opportunity to see this!

mimbles said...

Would your July date be Winterfest? If so, make sure you say hello, we'll be there all weekend. I'll be weaving and possibly making glass beads and hubby will be woodturning on his pole-lathe and participating in the combat.