Vikings Invade King's for a Living History Day

Near the border with the Danelaw, Macclesfield became a meeting ground for Anglo Saxons and the Vikings as the children in Year 4 learned that the mixing of the two cultures wasn’t all about bloodshed and battles, but about trade and social diversity. 
Led by ‘Viking’ and modern-day Norwegian Njal Thorfinnson, and his son Sven Njalson, from Viking School Visits, our Year 4 pupils travelled back to the time of King Canute and Queen Emma in the early eleventh century. Taking the manuscripts of the monks, the Viking sagas and the wealth of archaeology as their sources, Njal and Sven made the children their ‘thralls’ for the day.
The lowest rank in a highly structured social hierarchy, the thralls did the menial tasks for their masters and as Njal said, “is just one example among much of our modern-day vocabulary that owes its derivation to the Viking tongue.”  
They learned as Njal said that “as no one else was going to do it for them, they had to make their own bread, butter, clothes, jewellery and weaponry to be self-sufficient.”  
The day long re-enactment took the children from the times of the first raids coming in off the North Wales and Merseyside coastlines, to the growing partnership between the Anglo Saxons and the Norse tribes. 
Particularly fascinating to the young historians was the village’s wee bucket, a vital commodity in the production of cloth for young and old alike. King’s Year 4 teacher Mary Byrne said: “We can teach the history, culture and customs of the Vikings in class, but nothing brings it to life like a 6ft 6ins, 18 stone Norseman brandishing his sword in front of the children. It was an exhilarating event.”

Vikings Visit King's March 2020
Vikings Invade King's for a Living History Day