A HISTORIC castle is set to host its first jousting session of the year this weekend.

Hedingham Castle, off Bayley Street, Castle Hedingham, is hosting its popular annual Knights of Middle England event on April 13-14.

Visitors will be able to step back in time as the castle’s grounds are transformed into a battle ground where many medieval sporting pursuits and activities will be on show.

Jousting was a medieval sporting contest where two knights would face off against each other on horseback.

Halstead Gazette: Brave - a knight on horsebackBrave - a knight on horseback (Image: Christina Neate)

The two brave knights in suits of armour would charge at each other with lances until one has been defeated.

The weekend event starts at 10am on Saturday and finishes at 4pm on Sunday.

The Knights of Middle England, a live stunt show group which has more than 20 years of experience, will conduct two thrilling jousting tournaments  each day.

Audiences will also be able to enjoy the Knight School battles at the event, learning how to flight like a chivalrous knight.

There will also be a birds of prey display with Eden Falconry, combat displays, archery, axe throwing, traditional fairground games, medieval music, a medieval village to walk through, artisan stalls, and food and drink.

Castle marketing manager Steffi Dry said: "We can't wait to host our first joust of the year this weekend.

Halstead Gazette: Entertainment - Knights at Hedingham CastleEntertainment - Knights at Hedingham Castle (Image: Christina Neate)

“It felt very strange not opening with a joust on Easter Weekend as is our norm, but we are glad we held off for an extra couple of weeks as it looks like it's going to be a warm one.

“The Knights of Middle England are always fantastic entertainment, and the crowd loves them so it will be great to have them back.

“We're also excited to see Eden Falconry's beautiful birds fly in the arena as well as getting the younger audience involved in our Knight School battles.

“All in all, it should be a fantastic weekend."

Halstead Gazette: Thrilling - an audience watching a knight in armour with his lanceThrilling - an audience watching a knight in armour with his lance (Image: Christina Neate)

There will be free on-site parking available, and the gates open at 10am each day.

The first joust will start approximately at noon and the second begins at 3pm.

Children under the age of four and carers can attend either day for free.

An adult ticket costs £21.50, and a junior ticket for children aged four to 16 costs £16.

To find out more about prices, visit tinyurl.com/33z2tey2.