Medieval Pleasures, Part 3: Sport
Eleanor ventures into the Royal Armouries tiltyard, where seasoned jouster Andy Deane, and his opponent Andrew Balmforth, face off in an adrenaline fuelled jousting tournament - and you're invited!
We discover the harsh realities of this sport that's synonymous with the Middle Ages, and learn about its close ties to the art of combat and warfare. Our knights run a gauntlet of tests demonstrating the skill and precision needed to smash lances, spear boars and possibly secure a lucrative deal for your kingdom.
And it wasn't just the knights that got in on the action, Eleanor joins the Crossbow Guild and explores how it was not only practical, but would have given people from the humbler classes a chance to tour the country, show off their skills and earn some extra coin along the way.
Then, it's the thrill of the chase that gets Eleanor's heart fluttering, as Falconry Expert Emma Rapheal introduces us to this time honoured tradition and discusses how hunting parties weren't just for putting food on the table; but a popular sport that both a lady and a knight could enjoy.
Lastly, we find the royal court is not too far from the tennis court, when Eleanor takes on Hampton Court Palace's on-site professional, Nick Wood, at Real Tennis and finds out how to handcraft a Tudor-style ball. It turns out that tennis is actually an example of an unruly street game that was adopted and adored by medieval royals and nobility.