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Medieval Re-enactments with Anna Gore

Meet Anna Gore, a Customer Representative at the Southport site since 2022. Anna is passionate about medieval re-enactments and honing skills from as far back as the year 1100. We sat down with Anna to find out more and she shared her photographs with us.




What's a hobby or interest you're passionate about outside of your work at Atlanta?

I'm in love with medieval re-enactment! My period of interest is England in 1100 CE - 1200 CE. I'm part of a re-enactment society that pursues an accurate representation of medieval life, religion, and warfare. It’s the kind of hobby where you never stop learning!

Can you share a bit about how you discovered or developed this hobby?

I wanted to try some sort of fun, unusual exercise to help me keep fit. I remembered meeting a local medieval re-enactor years ago, so I searched for groups online and found one near me. The group was very welcoming and friendly, I just fit right in!

Are there any specific achievements  that you're proud of?

I'm considered a "Journeyman" manuscript illustrator, that's one rank below "Master", so I'm very proud of my work. One of my manuscript painting replicas (see right) was almost mistaken for the real one when I photographed it.




How does your outside-of-work passion contribute to your overall well-being?

Re-enactment brought me out of a very low place in my life, it gave me a community of likeminded people when I needed it most. I learned so much about myself, and I get opportunities to try things I would have never tried before (including foods). The hobby gives me so much joy, no matter how long I've been part of it. It changed my life!

Are there any stories about medieval re-enactment that you'd like to share?

My first ever full show battle is one of my favourite memories. We marched in formation onto the field in front of a huge crowd, the smell of woodsmoke all around and the sound of the armour and steel clanking was so alien. There were one hundred people on each side of the field, we were charging, yelling, and the arrows flying, I'll never forget it - for a brief moment it really felt like I had transported myself back in time.

How do you find time to pursue your hobby amidst your professional responsibilities?

We meet up twice a week, once for crafts and once for combat training. Training is always on Sunday so that's easy to work with, and we do craft after work on Wednesdays so it's not too hard to fit it in with the rest of my week. I book off the re-enactment shows as holidays through the summer if I can. Luckily, they’re usually on bank holiday weekends so some of them I already have off  which is a big help!




Do you see any connections between your outside-of-work activities and your role at Atlanta?

Customer service actually overlaps quite a lot between the two. When I'm in my medieval kit at a show, I explain how medieval life worked, some of the things I'm doing, and questions that members of the public have. This goes hand-in-hand with a good customer service experience, I think that it helps me be quite approachable.




Are there any new hobbies you're looking forward to exploring in the future?

Within the re-enactment society itself there's always new things to learn and try. I'm very interested in Medieval beekeeping, so I want to get some books about it. I would always be interested in trying out other time periods as well, perhaps Roman or Viking!

How do your colleagues at Atlanta support or share in your outside-of-work interests?

My colleagues sometimes ask me questions about shows I've done, and I'm always happy to talk about it. I've had lots of support from colleagues to cover my Saturday shifts where I have an important show to go to, and I really appreciate their help with that!




If you could encourage your colleagues to try one thing related to medieval re-enactment what would it be?

The fighting! It's really fun and actually a lot safer than you would think as we have a lot of safety rules in place. There’s nothing quite like swinging a sword and shield around. If you don't like the idea of fighting though, I'd recommend trying your hand at making a belt or a piece of clothing. We make everything by hand where we can and it's fun to try it - you can learn so many new skills along the way!