Lucy spent time with battle re-enactors
Battle re-enacting, cosplaying and dog showing – a hidden Britain explored
Alumna Lucy Feltham (Sociology and Philosophy 2008) sees Britain in an entirely different light after exploring its weird and wonderful communities for a year.
Lucy has been working her way through an A-Z of British Subculture - from aristocrats, battle re-enactors and circus performers to xtreme sport fanatics, yogi's and 'zeitgeist' political activists - spending a week with each group, learning about their rituals and customs and joining in at every opportunity.
So far the adventure has involved a 'vajazzle' in Essex, a pigeon race, a Sci-Fi cosplay victory, a naked weekend at a theme park, a knighthood from King Arthur and a vampire 'Rite of Transformation' ceremony.
One of her more memorable experiences was taking part in an undead LARP (live action role-playing) battle where, dressed as a ‘Storm of the Albion Forest,’ she fought in an epic 1000-man battle with a latex sword, holding back hoards of orcs and ogres with Shamanic magic.
"I have found myself in some pretty incredible and bizarre situations", Lucy says, "but writing this book has also taught me some valuable lessons about the importance of community in an increasingly isolating society and the misguided trust we put in our own prejudice. It has offered me a whole new perspective on the world, the sort of perspective you only really find during the downward facing dog of a naked yoga class.”
When asked what advise Lucy would give to her fellow Exeter alumni she said, "Never be afraid to put your comfortable life on hold to do something a bit crazy, be that travelling the world, taking on a major challenge, or anything else that takes you out of your comfort zone (it's surprising what you can get away with using the 'researching for a book' excuse!). You won't regret it, you will only regret not doing it."
You can follow Lucy's adventure at http://alphabetbritain.com, where you will also find details of the release date for the book.
Date: 7 January 2015