March into town with King Offa!

King Offas Procession

Join the King Offa celebration this month, as part of the Anglo-Saxon re-enactment at St Editha’s Church and square.

Tamworth Borough Council are inviting young and old to grab their shields and join King Offa of Mercia’s procession from the Ladybridge to St Editha’s Church, on Sunday 17 March.

King Offa was an outstanding figure in Anglo-Saxon history, born into the Mercian Royal House circa 730. It is believed Offa thought of himself as ‘King of the Mercians’ and that military successes were part of the transformation of Mercia from an overlordship of midland peoples into a powerful and aggressive kingdom.

Tamworth was clearly an important place for King Offa; as he built a palace at Tamworth, which was so magnificent in style and furnishings, that it was declared to be 'the wonder of the age'. This procession celebrates such an important figure in Tamworth’s history.

Witness the King Offa re-enactment of a charter signing at 12 noon in the church and enjoy live music and entertainment in the marquee at St Editha’s Square. There will also be free craft activities and a craft market, plus food and drink traders in the square including Spud Man and Gourmet Hog Roast Company.

Andrew Lythall from St. Editha's Church said: "St Editha's has been at the heart of Tamworth for over 1,000 years, and we are proud to continue to celebrate the ongoing story of our community. Tamworth has an incomparably rich history and there is so much for us to learn about the past as we seek to build a fantastic future for our town."


The schedule for Sunday 17 March:

  • 10am - Church Service, St Editha’s Church
  • 10am - 4pm, North Warwickshire Craft and Farmers Market, food and drink stalls and marquee with Anglo-Saxon craft activities open in St Editha's Square
  • 10am - 4pm, Anglo-Saxon storytelling with Dave Tong in Tamworth Castle (usual entrance fee applies)
  • 11.30am - King Offa’s Procession starts (Ladybridge, re-enactors Thegns of Mercia, leading with horses, public to follow)
  • 11.40am - Procession stops at Aethelflaed Monument for wreath laying ceremony
  • 11.47am - Procession leaves Aethelflaed Monument and heads to St Editha's Church
  • 12.00pm - Procession arrives at St Editha’s Church (Civic party led inside followed by public to be seated)
  • 12.05 -12.40pm - Charter Signing Ceremony in St Editha's Church, including St. Editha’s choir, St John Ambulance Brass Band, re-enactment Charter Signing Ceremony 
  • 12.20pm - Marquee activities start including Anglo-Saxon storytelling, Saxon music, poetry and verse and crafts including coin-making (Offa’s Silver Penny), tablet-weaving, Anglo-Saxon writing, board games, mail-making
  • 2.00pm - Music and Prose performance, St Editha’s Church


David Biggs from Tamworth District Civic Society (TDCS) said: "The Tamworth and District Civic Society is continually encouraging and promoting greater public awareness and understanding of, and engagement with, Tamworth's fabulous heritage and history. 

“We are delighted to have worked in partnership with Tamworth Castle and St Editha’s Church, to create this King Offa Procession, recalling the days when Offa - the mightiest of the Mercian kings - held court in his palace at Tamworth for Christmas and Easter, issuing charters.  

“Our town's Anglo-Saxon history is something to be very proud of, and to be made the most of.”

Storyteller Dave Tong will share enthralling stories of gods, myths and monsters at Tamworth Library on Saturday 16 March, every hour between 10am and 3pm; and on Sunday 17 March, hourly between 10.30am and 2.30pm at Tamworth Castle. General castle admission fees apply.


The sessions will feature tales of fire breathing dragons and the hero, Beowulf; Wayland the Smith, and his swan wife Herva. Also, some lesser-known Saxon folk tales like the Blind Bowmen and the legend of a powerful Iron sword forged deep beneath the earth long ago.

Visitors are also invited to join local artist Heather Higgins, in making Saxon brooches between 10am and 3pm in the Saxon marquee at St Editha’s Square on 17 March. Bring your Saxon bling along to the King Offa’s procession at 11.30am.

Councilor Tina Clements, Portfolio Holder for Engagement, Leisure and Events, said: “We’re excited to welcome local artists, storytellers and performers, to our town and castle. 

“There is plenty to enjoy on 17 March in St Editha’s Square, get involved in the free activities in the marquee and listen to the fascinating storytellers.

“The King Offa weekend will offer the chance for families and communities to celebrate our Anglo-Saxon heritage, be a part of a community procession through our historical town, plus meet re-enactors Thegns of Mercia on horseback!

“Keep an eye out for more details about the events on the castle website.”  

For more information and to book to visit the castle:

The event is organized by Tamworth Castle as part of a programme funded by UK Shared Prosperity Funding.