Living History Festival

Saturday 02 June to Sunday 03 June 2018
10.30am - 5pm

Step back in time! Come and experience 1,000 years of history at our Living History Festival over the weekend of 2-3 June 2018.

What happened at a medieval tournament? How did Saxon craftspeople make beautiful items? What were the sights and smells of a Tudor market? How did you survive in the Victorian era with little money?

New for 2018

This year’s show incorporates the centenary of the British Percheron Horse Society and the Museum is pleased to be welcoming some 30 of their magnificent horses to the event. Click here to view the British Percheron Horse Society Centenary 2018 leaflet.

The British Percheron Horse Society is celebrating 100 years  of the British stud book and members of the society’s horses will be taking part in arena reenactments connected with British history. The society will also display modern uses of the Percheron, including showing, competition driving, riding, plus farm and forestry work.

Members of the British Percheron Horse Society receive 50% discount on admission to the Living History Festival 2018 upon showing them membership card at the ticket office.

What can I expect?

During this special weekend you have the chance to walk through many different eras, from Saxon times to the twentieth century, to discover all this and much more.

Meet scores of re-enactors who will provide a glimpse into a different age. Activities will be located across the Museum site, with a timed programme of displays in the Events Field arena. Please be aware that some of the demonstrations include gunfire – expect some very loud bangs!

Watch the video

That’s TV Solent kindly filmed our 2017 event – take a look.


Download the Living History Festival 2017 show programme here and see what took place.

An event for all the family with encampments to explore, food and drink to taste, demonstrations of horsemanship and military drills to watch as well as trades, crafts and historical demonstrations to enjoy.

Information for visitors

Regular Museum admission prices apply and include admission to the show and Museum (free for Annual Members). Children aged 4 years and under enter free of charge.

The Living History Festival will open at 10.30am and close promptly at 5.00pm. The Museum itself will also close at the end of the show for safety reasons.

Visitors with disabilities are advised to read our accessibility page in advance of their visit.

Dogs on leads are welcome but please be aware there will be gunfire demonstrators and loud noises. There is ample free parking.

The Museum’s waterside café will be open, plus food and drink stalls are available. There are also lots of picnic areas.

If you have any questions please contact the Museum on 01243 811363 or email [email protected] in advance of you visit.

How to exhibit

If you are interested in exhibiting at this event, please download our revised Living History 2018 Exhibitor Pack.

We are unable to take reservations over the phone and we require a completed, signed booking form (and all necessary documents) prior to accepting your booking. Please note that, as of this year, we require a separate pack for each event.

For our Risk Assessment template please click here. For full Living History Festival 2018 terms and conditions, please click here.

If you have any questions, please contact our events team on 01243 811032 or [email protected].

Please note that the closing date for applications is Friday 2nd March 2018.


If you would like outright (or contributory) sponsorship of one of our events we have various packages to suit all budgets. Contact us to discuss your requirements today!

Our events are a fantastic way to reach your target audience and support the Museum, which is a registered charity. For further information please email our Events Team on [email protected] or call 01243 811363.