We need your help now

Support from readers like you keeps The Journal open.

You are visiting us because we have something you value. Independent, unbiased news that tells the truth. Advertising revenue goes some way to support our mission, but this year it has not been enough.

If you've seen value in our reporting, please contribute what you can, so we can continue to produce accurate and meaningful journalism. For everyone who needs it.

silly billy

A Welsh town has just appointed its first resident jester in 700 years

Job requirements: Juggling daggers blindfolded, balancing a sword on your chin and making a gold coin disappear.

erwyd Russel Erwood - Erwyd le Fol - completing his tests before being named town jester in Conwy, north Wales. Conwy_Jester Conwy_Jester

A SMALL WELSH town has appointed its first resident jester in more than 700 years, naming him in an elaborate medieval ceremony.

Russel Erwood was officially dubbed Erwyd le Fol (French for ‘fool’) during an event in the main square in Conwy, north Wales, yesterday, which included falconry, knights and a parade.

The 34-year-old had to complete three challenges to get the job: juggling daggers blindfolded, balancing a sword on his chin and making a gold coin disappear during a conjuring trick.

The market town’s previous jester – Tom le Fol – was appointed by King Edward I of England, who was besieged by the Welsh within the town walls over the winter of 1294-1295.

“It’s a huge honour to take up the role of town jester, there aren’t that many around,” Erwood, a professional magician and circus performer, told AFP.

He undertook his trials under the watchful eye of an executioner equipped with a large medieval axe to administer justice in case Erwood failed any of his tasks.

It was quite intimidating – he wasn’t a small chap.

Erwood will attend official functions wearing a hood with donkey ears, as part of his traditional 13th-century jester’s outfit.

He will perform tricks around the town while putting on two shows a day, three days a week until August 29.

Contains reporting by AFP.

Read: Obsolete laws scrapped – Now we can say whatever we like about Henry VIII’s marriage plans>

Column: Yola and Fingalian – the forgotten ancient English dialects of Ireland>

Readers like you are keeping these stories free for everyone...
A mix of advertising and supporting contributions helps keep paywalls away from valuable information like this article. Over 5,000 readers like you have already stepped up and support us with a monthly payment or a once-off donation.

Your Voice
Readers Comments
    Submit a report
    Please help us understand how this comment violates our community guidelines.
    Thank you for the feedback
    Your feedback has been sent to our team for review.