Cancelled: Jorvik Viking Festival Battle Spectacular falls victim to the weather

Flashback to the 2018 battle in the Eye of York

There was disappointment in York today as the traditional climax of the Jorvik Viking Festival was cancelled due to the bad weather.

The Battle Spectacular, due to take place this evening (Saturday) will not now take place because of the high winds. It followed the earlier cancellation of afternoon combat.


A Jorvik Viking Festival spokesperson said:

  • With regret, the weather conditions are so poor that safety concerns make hosting the Battle Spectacular this evening impossible.

    We have been unable to set the barriers or raise the lighting rigs which are a crucial part of the safety arrangements. We do not expect the winds to drop significantly before this evening’s event is due to start.

One festival fan said on Facebook: “This is a shame but credit to you all for trying and glad you made the right call – people may be disappointed, I know I am, but they would be more disappointed if they stood in the cold and rain and couldnt see anything.”

Full refunds available

There’s been lots of other things to enjoy at the festival
What with Storm Dennis during its opening weekend, and heavy rain and gale force winds in this one, the weather has not been kind to the festival.

“We are sure that visitors and re-enactors alike will understand this decision,” the spokesperson said.

“We have been remarkably unlucky with the weather this year, but are pleased that events like our Strongest Viking Competition, our annual Best Beard competition and the March to Coppergate have been able to take place today with such fantastic audiences.”


Visitors with tickets to the Battle Spectacular are being contacted.

Full refunds will be available from 5.15pm at Jorvik Viking Centre in the Coppergate Centre.and from 4.15pm at DIG on St Saviourgate, both of which will remain open until 7pm today.

The 10th century traders event continues to take place as planned at Merchant Adventurers’ Hall today and tomorrow.

The Jorvik Viking Festival Symposium, which takes place tomorrow (Sunday 23 February) will continue as planned, with tickets available on the door for £35 at the De Gray Lecture theatre at York St John University.