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NEWS RELEASE No: 1473223 JUNE 2011

Legions march on Dalby Forest

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Members of Comitatus prepare to attack!

The Comitatus period history group returns to the Forestry Commission woodland near Pickering to set up camp and show what army life was like circa 5th century AD.

The acclaimed outfit takes its name from an elite unit based near Bridlington ordered to repel foreign invaders.  

Roman power was on the decline, with the Anglo-Saxons waiting in the wings and Picts threatening from the north, but the army was still a potent fighting force.

Comitatus will revive those far off days by demonstrating spears, swords and axes and a fearsome siege weapon called the ballista. 

But it's not all blood and guts, said Chief Recreation Ranger Cath Brason.

“North Yorkshire was a major base for the legions in their bid to secure the empire’s frontiers.  Comitatus will explain how troops were recruited and what they ate, with camp followers baking bread, working leather and showing medical treatments.  It's a fabulous and authentic glimpse into a little known yet crucial period.”

The free event is based around Dalby Forest Visitor Centre (forest toll applies for cars) and activities run throughout both days. For more information contact 01751 460295.

Note to Editor

The Forestry Commission is the government department responsible in England for protecting, expanding able management of woods and forests and increasing their value to society and the environment. Forestry makes a real contribution to sustainable development, providing social and environmental benefits arising from planting and managing attractive, as well as productive, woodlands. Further information can be found at new Forestry Commission website for Yorkshire and the Humber at

Media contact: Richard Darn 0775 367 0038.