So, this year was a bit of a risk. An event that could be described as niche, not only doing HEMA, but also limiting that HEMA to a specific geographic location and also a specific timeframe.
But I shouldn’t have worried. It was the 200th anniversary of Angelo after all.
It was, from my perspective, a great success and that can only be attributed to the epic support of the groups who came, Schola Gladiatoria, Red Dragon, Tree of Shields, HSSV Ludolph van Ceulen, Broadsword Academy Manitoba, Die Freifechter, Academy of Historic Arts, Espada Negra, Saltaire Academy of the Sword, London Historical Fencing Club, AHF, School of the Sword, Tree of Shields, York, School of Defence, Manchester Historical Fencing, Glasgow HEMA, School of Historical Combat, Bartitsu Lab, Black Boar, Linacre School of Defence, HEMA Concepts and Portsmouth British Martial Arts.
My team of marshals, first aiders and minions (who gave themselves this title) were superb and made it as stress free as it can be organising an event like this.
All the lessons were really well received and attended, the Victorian cutting feats certainly vexed a few before having a lot of success.
The tournament ran how I had hoped it would. There has been some really good feedback about how I am going to tweak it for next year (more rounds of fighting…). Encouraging fencers to not look for just winning points, but do not be hit, try all the weapons that the Art of Defence, amongst others, tell us can be used with the system and try new things worked really well. We also had technical judges who observed all the bouts and noted technical excellence.
The winner deserved his win as did all the technical winners (of whom there were 5).
Thank you to everyone who came. You made this event what it was. It was a pleasure to host you all and I hope to see you all again next year.