Regia Anglorum was a term used by early English writers to describe the English state. It means 'The Kingdoms of the English'. In a twentieth century context Regia Anglorum is a nationwide society with many independent local groups, from Scotland to the south coast, who all work within a tight set of common sense rules.
Regia Anglorum attempts to recreate a cross section of English life, generally around the turn of the first millennium. That said, our original self imposed brief was AD950 - 1066, but as the Society evolves, we do very happily take on both events and filmwork that stretch back to the time of the English Settlements and forward to the time of Richard the Lionheart and King John. The 800th anniversary of Magna Carta in 2015 is closer by the day!
These were tumultuous and interesting times when this island saw the influx and absorption of wave after wave of immigrants and settlers. From the time when Rome was no longer an influence here, a nation was forged in the fire of change after change, often maintaining England as the richest nation in Europe. Here it was that our language, customs and culture were evolved, that resistance to the Vikings led us to see ourselves as a nation state, the Conquest by Duke William joined us irrevocably to Continental Europe and the revolt of the Barons made even King John agree to a Rule of a Law that applied to us all.
By Datelining all our events, we can portray accurate images of the life and times of those who lived in the Islands of Britain so long ago.
Our concern is to portray life in the round. This will of course include the warrior, striding the place of slaughter, his weapons ready to deal death and destruction. But we think it is equally important to demonstrate embroidery, how to make flour and bake bread and the whole gamut of techniques and skills that take a fleece from a sheep and turn it into a dyed cloth.
From our extensive tented Living History Encampment, we can carry these skills into a field near you, into schools and colleges, into museums and galleries all over the United Kingdom. But we were not content with this: to become closer to our ancestors, we have a whole fleet of ships and a Longhall at Wychurst on our own land in Kent.
For Regia and its members, portraying 'life in the round' is a serious business and we have committed nearly thirty years and hundreds of thousands of pounds and the skills of our members. We shed blood, tears, toil and sweat to bring those distant centuries to sharp and clear focus in the modern world.
Our basic tenet is Authenticity. To this end we will not portray any image, support any ideal, or make any item of kit which we cannot provenance from contemporary sources. This sometimes requires us to re-evaluate how we look and why we make or wear certain iteums, and to alter them or our habits to hone the image we depict.
Perhaps you are now be wondering how become a member, but if you are looking for a membership form, I'm afraid you will search in vain! We like to meet prospective members at local group level before we offer them a form. This is partly a safety filter as you'd expect with a society that has much to do with edged weapons, but we also like to explain the pleasures, pains and pitfalls of becoming a member of an organisation that takes accuracy of portrayal as seriously as we do. Like any other hobby, you can spend a little money to get into the game and, for the would be combatant, one never need progress beyond the level of a freeborn Ceorl equipped with only a spear and shield. There is nothing we say or do that runs your arm up your back to get better kit, a mail shirt, a helmet or - what every aspiring warrior wants - a Broadsword. But most do and it is only fair to tell you up front what you might be letting yourself in for.
Within these pages, there are sections on every subject you can imagine and we hope you'll quickly realise that we are about history first and everything we do is predicated around an accurate presentation of our ancestors. We owe them that, surely?
You may also like to explore the fictional pre-Conquest estate of 'Wichamstow', where you can find out more about the life and times of late Viking Age Britain. If you go to the Eorl's manor of Drengham, you will discover more about warfare and the defence of Anglo-Saxon Britain.
All of the information herein is based upon research conducted by members of Regia Anglorum and is illustrated where possible with illustrations or photographs to give a detailed insight into life of the period. We hope that they will aid both enthusiasts, students and academics to picture and expand their knowledge, or even encourage more personal research.
The images on this page demonstrate some of the varied situations that Regia members find themselves in. Pictures of men in battle are the kind of representations that are always associated with this period. However, people had to feed and clothe themselves, travel and have somewhere to live, all of which have to be experienced to some extent to get a better feel for the period.
Regia hopes to inject some reality into these once everyday activities. Whilst this can include getting cold, wet and reeking of wood smoke, just sitting around the campfire with your friends is an atmospheric experience in itself, which we hope brings the 10th century back to life for you.
Regia has recently taken the brave step to embark upon a project to reconstruct a fortified Anglo-Saxon manor house. The site has been named Wychurst and although it did not exist 1000 years ago locally, is a typical name for such a settlement in the Weald of Kent in Southern England. As with all Regia projects, this literally ground breaking enterprise is being done with great care to ensure the completed project will be as faithful as is practically possible. It is early days yet, but the site is cleared; the ramparts are in place and the frames of the manor house are in position All that remains is to add the roof and the walls. More information is easily accessible by following the link.
Photographs of the progress of the build; recent images of Regia's activities at shows and involvement in TV can found in our illustrious Eolder's Webshots galleries.