Ever spotted medieval knights in the city? This is what they're up to

There are many different Larp groups in Norwich. 

There are many different LARP groups in Norwich. - Credit: Steph Pardoe

Every now and then people dressed as knights and Vikings are spotted roaming the city streets. 

But finally the lid has been lifted on the city's LARPing community - otherwise known as Live Action Role Play. 

LARP is a form of role-playing where players physically portray their characters for fun and as a form of escapism. 

“Have you ever been watching a movie and thought that you would like to be that hero or even the villain?” asked Steph Pardoe.

Live action role playing could be seen as the ultimate escapism. 

Live action role playing could be seen as the ultimate escapism. - Credit: Steph Pardoe

She continues: “Or you might have looked at a costume and wanted to wear it.

"LARP is a place where you can do that and tell your story."

She explained:  "All things start small. For many people local games are a gateway into the hobby - a chance to talk to others about how to make costume, how to wear armour or fight with swords and so on."  

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Steph is looking forward to playing a new character, she said: “I am looking forward to playing a wizard or spell-caster of some sort.  

“I am also one half of the storytelling team responsible for the Norwich LARP community."

Lots of people enjoy coming up with their Larp characters. 

Lots of people enjoy coming up with their LARP characters. - Credit: Steph Pardoe

Another LARP enthusiast who have their name only as Jo, explained they had been an avid LARPer for seven years.

They added: “I really missed LARP during the pandemic as it is absolutely part of my mental health self-care, the ability to escape and be someone else is so freeing, and I have missed it immensely.  

Talking about characters, Jo added: “Some characters come really easily and you instantly know what you want to play, some take a little more time.  

“I currently play Sarah of the Suns of Couros who is a courage priest.” 

Larping is also known as Live Action Role Playing. 

LARPing is also known as Live Action Role Playing. - Credit: Steph Pardoe

Fellow player Ben Allen said: “As a game-runner in the long run I want people to enjoy the hobby and get to a point where they can go to a bigger game with confidence and to act safely for themselves and others. 

“On a weekly basis I aim to be able to give each person a cool thing they did and make them part of the story.” 

Sam Jobe is a farmer. 

Sam Jobe is a farmer. - Credit: Oliver Facey

Meet one of the characters of the LARP community: 

Jack Stalley enjoys LARP and has been attending retreats for years, he currently plays Sam Jobe.  

Sam Jobe is a farmer and works on the land owned by Baron Diggory.  

Talking in character with a thick country accent he said: "I grew up in a poor family and was found in a ransacked village. 

“I recently took to the battlefield with the other members of Diggory's farm, we are known as Diggory’s dogs.” 

Sam had to take part in a ritual to save the land from the tyrant's army.  

“I was part of the infamous archer line that defended the camp.  

“I used my connection to the land to wield Sastrines power against the Tyrants forces,” he explained.  

Talking about his future, Sam said: “I would like harmony in the land. 

“And singing, yeah, definitely more singing. 

“Other than that, well, I have a warm bed and a good meal, that’s all I need!” 

Jack Stalley plays Sam Jobe and can be seen working the land. 

Jack Stalley plays Sam Jobe and can be seen working the land. - Credit: Jack Stalley