Virtual St Mary's Institute for Historical Research

Where St. Mary's Staff and Historians live virtually.

Virtual St Mary's Institute for Historical Research

Where St. Mary's Staff and Historians live virtually.

Robin Hood Jump

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June 11 2018
Report by Nicole Pilcher

One day I will learn...no I will really...not to volunteer my services...I mean I am a Safety and Risk Officer...I should be locked in my office with Jackie Pieper...I should never be allowed off the grounds of St. Mary's...you really would have thought that the Titanic jump had taught me a lesson but no...

Robin Hood Jump Report - The Kirklees Priory Group

One day I find myself in a pod with Julie Jennifer, Marion A Brown, Adrienne Wolffe Feddersen and Charissa E Hutchins listening to the countdown to the jump to Sherwood Forrest when Julie Jennifer announces to all that I am leading the Priory Group. Now for a start, I had thought I was going along to the archery group to ensure they were following the health and safety rules. Then after much discussion and concern that I wouldn't be able to help myself and pull out Risk Assessments at the contest the powers that be decided that I could have a quiet jaunt to Kirklees...no stress, no fuss just find out if Robin Hood was already dead, did he fire the arrow in the air, was his burial site there. So certain that I was just going to follow the sheep, sorry I mean group, I didn't even do that much research and there was Jennifer looking me squarely in the eyes telling me I was in charge...well bloody, blocking hell.

We landed, very gently actually, in Sherwood Forest and immediately set off for the priory as we had a much longer walk than the other groups. However, within a few minutes, Adrienne Wolffe Feddersen decided that she would be better off with the group heading towards the food...well you couldn't blame her. Several minutes later Charissa E Hutchins yelled something about a really good looking lute player and that she would see us back at the pod. Julie saw the loss of 2 of her group as simply making her security role easier and whispered into her comms that the other groups had 2 extra team members coming their way.

It was a warm day and believe me medieval clothing does nothing to keep you cool on a warm day. Julie and Marion were laughing at me as I kept on getting my legs tangled up in my skirt. They were laughing even harder when we came upon a nun from Kirklees Priory who got it into her head that I was the new recruit she was expecting and that my basket contained the dowry for the priory. Julie managed, between laughing, to explain that I was on my way to join my betrothed and had wanted to spend a little time in quiet contemplation, whilst our escort enjoyed the delights of the archery contest. The nun then graciously invited us inside the priory to meet and break bread with the Abbess which we graciously accepted.

As Marion and Julie's Latin are better than mine I allowed them to conduct the conversations with the Abbess but despite them trying to steer the conversation around to Robin Hood, she just steered it back to my upcoming nuptials.

After we had feasted we took our leave in order to explore the priory further. And there, hurrying, or was that wobbling down the corridor was one rather large and plump friar. Marion nudged me, and Julie looked like she had just won the lottery. We were all thinking the same thing. Could this be the infamous Friar Tuck? We followed him..he entered the kitchens, only stopping to grab a meat pie that was sitting on the table, and went out into the kitchen gardens. We followed him through the herb garden to a small secluded patch which appeared to contain a grave. Here he crossed himself and bowed his head in silent prayer. After we had waited what we considered to be a respectful amount of time Marion and I walked towards him.

Marion apologized for interrupting his prayers and asked if this was the grave of the infamous Robin Hood. The Friar smiled and say "Both yes and no" Marion looked bemused how could it be both yes and no. "Because," said the Friar, "No one man was ever Robin Hood, many men play the part, some are great archers, and some are great swordsmen all who play the part dress in green. We like to keep that Sheriff of Nottingham on his toes and this deception works well and gives hope to the people." Of course, it all made sense. That is why in our time Robin was no more than a legend with little proof that he ever existed. Marion and I thanked him for letting us into the secret which we promised to take to our graves and with Julie, we started to return to the pod.

We arrived at our pod in good time, however, there was a lot of chatter on the coms and Julie was called to help. (That story will no doubt be told in a different report) She told us to stay put so Marion and I set about making tea. I had secreted several packs of biscuits into the pod and we sat happily munching whilst listening to the chaos on the coms. When it appeared that Julie might be returning with Adrienne Wolffe Feddersen and Charissa E Hutchins who appeared to have a lute hidden under her cloak, we got to work and tidied the pod both inside and out, I ejected several acorns that we appeared to have picked up on our travels. When our team was all present and correct we returned to St Mary's, medical and of course the bar.

I had already left Hawking for medical when some kind of furor took place so I am not able to report on that. In fact by the time the rest of the team reached the bar I was a merry man singing "Robin Hood, Robin Hood, riding through the glen" Deb Danielson has made me promised that I will never come to the bar on Karaoke night as a result.


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