Skip to main content

East Meets West at the Royal Armouries this January

Friday, 5 January 2018

On Saturday 20 and Sunday 21 January eastern and western martial arts will meet at the Royal Armouries Museum in Leeds.

Over the action-packed weekend, visitors can witness experts in historical and modern-day martial arts showcase impressive fighting techniques from Western Europe, South Asia and the Far East. There will also be a number of opportunities for visitors to get involved in exciting have-a-go activities.

The Live Interpretation Team will be delivering costumed performances throughout the weekend that compare and contrast Eastern and Western combat techniques, arms and armour. This will include an Arming the Warrior demonstration of European medieval harness and Japanese samurai armour. There will also be live combat demonstrations and workshops showcasing boxing from around the world, French Savate, Korean Taekwondo and Indian Gatka.

For visitors wanting to get involved in the action there will be a number of have-a-go opportunities, including Tai Chi workshops and Taiko Drumming sessions. There will also be sessions for visitors to try their hand at traditional Japanese origami and Chinese name crafts.

The Royal Armouries collections include arms and armour from around the world and throughout history. Many of these objects relate to martial arts from both eastern and western cultures, including ornate Samurai armour dating from the 19th-century and katana, or swords, from 14th-century Japan.

Commenting on the event, Mark Jackson, Events and Informal Learning Manager at the Royal Armouries, said: “A key part of the history of arms and armour is their development for use in martial arts. Many people may associate martial arts as being part of Far Eastern tradition, however they might not realise martial arts have been central to warrior cultures all around the world, including in Europe.

“East Meets West will introduce visitors to the differing techniques and weaponry used in global martial arts, giving them a chance to meet experts in the field and witness them in action. The weekend will be great fun for all of the family, filled with action-packed demonstrations and have-a-go sessions.”

To find out more about ‘East Meets West’ at the Royal Armouries, visit:


Notes to editors

Further enquiries to: Katie Canning, Communications Officer, Royal Armouries at Telephone: 0113 220 1978

About the Royal Armouries
Entry to the museum is free but some activities carry a small charge.
– Royal Armouries has sites in Leeds, HM Tower of London and Fort Nelson in Hampshire.
– The Royal Armouries Museum in Leeds houses a major part of the national collection of arms and armour, and displays over 8,500 objects throughout its five themed galleries.
– Open all year daily, 10am-5pm. Closed 24-26 December
– Website:
– The Royal Armouries Museum should not be confused with Royal Armouries International plc, the private sector corporate hospitality business based on the same site in Leeds.

About the Royal Armouries

Entry to the museum is free but some activities carry a small charge.