Meet Team Australia: Sarah Hay and Phillip Leitch | Royal Armouries Easter Joust

Our Easter Tournament sees jousters from across the globe compete for personal glory and international bragging rights. Ahead of this year’s joust, meet team Australia, represented this year by Sarah Hay and Phillip Leitch. Sarah Hay Motto: ‘Courage.  Passion.  Integrity.’ An equestrian since she could walk, Sarah Hay has competed in the disciplines of show hacking, dressage, side saddle, camp drafting, sporting, jumping, eventing, mounted archery and now jousting. Her passion for the joust was inspired at first sight of theRead more

Stumbling towards equality? The role of women in the First World War

This year marks both the centenary of the end of the First World War and of the passing of the Representation of the People Act, allowing some women the right to vote for the first time. Here we take a look at just a few of the remarkable images from our archives showing women at work on the Home Front and beyond, the images reveal the essential role women played in the war effort. The lives of many women changedRead more

The oldest known European fencing manual in existence.

In this monthly blog series, our collections team write about their Object of the Month, chosen from our collection. In this month’s blog, Stuart Ivinson, Librarian at the Royal Armouries Museum in Leeds, explores the history of the treasured manuscript I.33, ahead of the publication of Jeffrey Forgeng’s latest transcription. A jewel of the collection One of the oldest and most enigmatic treasures in the Royal Armouries archives is the Royal Armouries I.33 manuscript, a surviving example of a Fechtbuch, or Fight Book. This particular manualRead more

Edith Garrud: The West country superwoman who created the ‘jujutsuffragettes’

Words by Bridget Clifford, Keeper of the Tower Armouries. “Physical force seems the only thing in which women have not demonstrated their equality to men, and while we are waiting for the evolution which is slowly taking place and bringing about that equality, we might just as well take time by the forelock and use science, otherwise ju-jitsu.” So wrote Mrs Edith Garrud, west country superwoman who introduced Far Eastern martial arts to the W.S.P.U. Who was Edith Garrud? 1910 was theRead more

‘Horsing around’ in the conservation lab

Words by Ellie Rowley-Conwy, Conservator, Royal Armouries.  Objects brought to us in Conservation can be chosen for treatment for a number of reasons. Sometimes it is because they are in a fragile state and interventive action is required for the long-term preservation of the piece, and sometimes it is so they can be better displayed and understood by the public. In fact both of these reasons are true for this next object that is currently being treated in the conservationRead more

Object of the Month for February: The Tula Sporting Garniture

In this monthly blog series, our collections team write about their Object of the Month, chosen from our collection. In this month’s blog, Lisa Traynor, Curator of Firearms at the Royal Armouries Museum, explores the history of the elaborately decorated Tula Garniture.  A show of wealth Prior to the 15th century, weapons of the hunt were largely the same as those used in warfare. However, as the techniques of hunting became more specialised and the grandest weaponry more elaborate, the useRead more