Sunday, 6 January 2013

Swords of Middle Earth in Leeds!

Today we took the children to the Royal Armouries in Leeds to see a special exhibition, it was the four swords of Middle Earth from the Lord of the Rings trilogy. The children have all been looking forwards to it all week, we haven't visited the armouries for a while as we have been so many times and none of us are good with too much repetition! To be honest we were slightly underwhelmed with the exhibition and probably the biggest disappointment was that the sword they were most excited to see "Sting" which is the sword of Bilbo and Frodo Baggins wasn't there. The exhibit itself was really small. There was a video showing how swordsmith Peter Lyon made "Sting"-which was very interesting and well a bit WOW, what an amazing skill to have to be able to craft something so beautiful. This only added really to our disapointment of the sword not being there. There was no mention on the website or even in the cabinet itself, it was only as we were leaving I found a member of staff to ask and was told it had arrived late and was still in quarantine. I  think it should have been mentioned on the website or at least a note in the cabinet to explain! We had some very disappointed children on our hands!

But we managed to make the most of it anyway! As we had watched the Prince of Persia film only last night we were happy to discover a map of the Persian Empire which interested the children and as we left that room there was a small rectangle chainmail sample, a bit similar to what Frodo wore in the Lord of the Rings. Ruben spent a while touching and looking at its patterns and we talked about how heavy it must have been to wear but how strong it was. Its great when things tie in, especially when your not expecting them too!
There was lots of armour to look at and plenty of swords. Bailey was quite interested in the guns, I think this is most likely to his serious gaming on the Xbox, I could sigh heavily but to be honest I'm just happy that at 14 years old he is still happy to come out with us and enjoy looking at new things, there's plenty of teenagers that wouldn't. Piper and Cordelia spent quite a lot of time looking for bows and arrows-mainly due to the gigantic crush they have devloped on one Legolas Greenleaf! Its very sweet.
We paid for the children to have a go on a real crossbow. It was quite tricky to be honest and I'm glad hubby was there as there's no way could I have kept pulling the string back to load the arrows for four children on four different crossbows-and to be honest they frightened me to death! Hubby enjoyed himself though and even managed to fit in a sneaky go himself :D

And even time for a family game of chess/draughts

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