KNIGHTS and maidens came to Evesham as the town was transported back in time for a medieval market.

Hosted by the Battle of Evesham, the Medieval Market saw crafts, knights and weapon demonstrations, live music and competitions.

This was Evesham’s first Medieval Market weekend, a fundraiser in support of the main Battle of Evesham Festival, which is held in August every year.

It was hoped the event would draw visitors to the town - but coronavirus regulations meant that plans had to take social distancing concerns into consideration.

Mateusz Kwiecień who attended the market said: "It was a fantastic time! There were many attractions for the youngest children. The food and handicraft stands absolutely amazed me.

"I'm glad the Medieval market was right in the heart of Evesham because it added splendour. "Wandering between the stands one gave an impression of being transferred in time, as if the spirit of this place rested for a moment between us.

"Many thanks to everyone who contributed to making this market in such a difficult time."

The outdoor market was based in Evesham Parish Church grounds and spread throughout five separate locations - and its aim was to drive extra footfall into the shops, pubs and restaurants in the town centre.

Battle of Evesham director Mick Hurst said: “This outdoor market was a logistical challenge, being placed smack in the town centre and around the medieval churches of All Saints and St Laurence’s.

"It is so much easier to organise the main festival in August on the Crown Meadow, but that location does very little to promote our beautiful town centre and its fabulous buildings or support our long-term traders based here in the heart of Evesham”

“The Evesham Medieval Market Weekend attracted the very best traders from the world of re-enactment, including Uwe Schneevoigt, who travelled from Rheinberg in Germany, just for our Market. Uwe was very pleased with the sales he made, in fact all 75 traders reported a good weekend, many shifted enough stock to keep them going well into next year.”

The Evesham Medieval Market Weekend organisers worked closely with; Evesham Town Council, Wychavon District Council, Worcestershire County Council, West Mercia Police, The Churches Conservation Trust and The Parish of Evesham, with discussions taking place right up to the last minute about how the market could be managed safely.

Nigel Huddleston, MP and Government Minister for Culture, posted on Facebook: ‘Thank you to the organisers, store holders, food and drink vendors, entertainers, and visitors for making the weekend Medieval Market and the main festival in Evesham so enjoyable. Special thanks for adhering to current Covid measures.’

Mr Hurst said: “Everyone agreed that this market would help the Vale of Evesham draw in tourism, support the town’s economy and help promote the Battle of Evesham next year – now considered to be the largest thirteenth century actual battle re-enactment in the World, drawing visitors from Australia, USA and across Europe.”

“Plans are now being drawn up for 2021’s Medieval Market and Battle weekends, taking on board any constructive criticism.

"The 150 flags and shields around the town centre help to remind residents and visitors how important the events around Evesham were in political history and provide a unique visitor experience, the flags will be removed over winter but returned in spring next year to help promote an increasingly busy medieval calendar during the summer.

“With the continued support of our local authorities, the church and the many volunteers and residents of Evesham, we aim to place our historic town on the agenda of any visitor staying in the Cotswolds, Worcestershire or Stratford-upon-Avon, helping the town to regenerate over the next few years as a fabulous destination, which in turn will protect Evesham jobs and create many more in the tourism, leisure and services sectors.”