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Living history at Bodiam Castle

Performers in medieval costume and armour in front of Bodiam Castle
The Knights ready for Knight School at Bodiam Castle, East Sussex | © National Trust/Jennifer Coe

Embark on a journey through history at Bodiam Castle - where the past comes alive! Get involved with our living history events, where you'll meet historical figures and discover stories from long-ago.

What's on in 2024

Medieval Encampment  

Walk through a medieval encampment in the castle grounds, meet characters from the 1400s and discover more about the medieval way of life, from the boardgames people played to skills like weaving and leatherwork. Enter the arena to listen to weapons talks, dress the knight, watch sword demonstrations and more.

The House of Bayard

Sat 27–Sun 28 Jul


Free, normal admission applies.

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Have-a-go archery 

Have a go at the medieval sport of longbow archery against the backdrop of Bodiam Castle. Learn how to get to grips with a bow and arrow from friendly instructors. 

  • Thu 1 Aug – Sun1 Sep


£4 for 6 arrows, normal admission applies.

Suitable for adults and children aged 6+.

This open-air activity is weather dependent, and occasionally may need to be changed or cancelled at short notice.

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The Harvey Buffs: WWII re-enactment group 

Come and meet the WWII soldiers at the pill box to hear what life would have been like during war time. Find out why Bodiam Castle has a pill box, see what munitions they would have used and what a WWII encampment would have looked like.

  • Sat 10 & Sun 11 Aug


Free, normal admission applies.

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Re-enactors in WWII uniform in an encampment by the pill box in Bodiam Castle grounds
The Harvey Buffs WWII re-enactment group by the pill box in Bodiam Castle grounds | © National Trust/Jennifer Coe

Knight School

Experience action-packed tournament duels, arming the knight and get involved with storytelling shows and armour handling throughout the day, as performers from theatre company Histrionics deliver this interactive family-friendly event.

  • Sun 18 Aug– Mon 26 Aug

10am to 4.15pm, drop-in throughout the day.

Free event, normal admission applies.

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Demonstrations by Call to Arms

Call to Arms is a group of volunteers with a passion for history and training in Historical European Martial Arts. Dressed in full armour, they show what medieval combat may have looked like, through showing weapons and explaining techniques.

  • Sat 7 Sep, 10.30am–4.30pm
  • Sat 12 Oct, 10.30am–4.30pm

Free, normal admission applies.

Find out more

Stay up to date with the latest living history events at Bodiam Castle by regularly checking this page as more events will be added throughout the year.

Aquatint engraving of Bodiam Castle, East Sussex, by S Hooper c1777, with a fisherman in the foreground, fishing in the moat

A brief history of Bodiam Castle 

Discover the history of Bodiam Castle. Find out who built it, its royal connections and what historic graffiti can tell us about the castle’s past.

Family playing on thrones in the courtyard at Bodiam Castle, East Sussex

Family-friendly things to do at Bodiam Castle 

Discover things to see and do on a family visit to Bodiam Castle. Join in with activities and let your imagination run riot in this Medieval setting.

Frosty winter grounds with exterior south side of Bodiam Castle in backdrop, East Sussex

The grounds of Bodiam Castle 

Discover what to see and do in the grounds of Bodiam Castle. Take a riverside walk, stop for a picnic or look for wildlife – from rare bees to bats.