Medieval Knight Town, the only one of its kind in Poland, has opened in Byczyna. Its official name is the Polish-Czech Knight Training Center. As reported by the newspaper Gazeta Wyborcza, construction cost 14.5 mln zloty and was partly sponsored by the EU. Because knight competitions have been held in Byczyna for a long time and knights from throughout Europe attend the tournaments, there was no problem winning the EU grant. Medieval Town has everything a knight would need: a hotel and a medieval inn as well as blacksmith’s shop and an armory.
Medieval cottages and craftsmen’s workshops also were built. The complex is to serve more than knights and tournament enthusiasts. According to the originators, it also will be a tourist attraction. Some 330 spectator seats will be provided in the auditorium of the wooden town and an equal number of seats in a gallery. The hub of this center is a fortified town situated on a lagoon. The town covers 2,000 square meters.
The concept is based on similar constructions from the early Middle Ages, however not as old as the town of Biskupin. The Polish-Czech Knight Training Center will have swords, axes, spears, bows, crossbows and siege catapults. This training will include swordmanship, individual combat, combat in formation, and horse riding with tournament weaponry. The town aspires to become the knight’s capital of Europe. “I have seen such places in south France and Spain, and it has worked out there,” Jaroslaw Gawrys, the town’s designer, told Gazeta Wyborcza.
“There has been nothing like that in Poland, so one can say we are the pioneers.” Last weekend, knights celebrated the opening of the town by competing in many fields of weapon use. One of the benefits of Medieval Knight Town is that it generates new places of work, for example in the inn or tavern. The increase in tourism activity also helps the job market. Entering the wooden town, we can see that it was built with great enthusiasm and passion. And it has made a big impression on the first visitors, who can imagine for a while that the calendar has been turned backward to medieval times.