Probably the most competitive role on the battlefield, this is a great de-stresser and is suitable for adults, both male and female, who like a physical challenge.

A pike is an 18-feet long pole made of wood that normally had a metal spike at the end, though for safety reasons ours do not.

A very traditional weapon that required skill to master, the pike were used en masse by well-drilled men. Pikemen would stand in large blocks to protect vulnerable musketeers from charging cavalry and they would also attack the enemy in brutal hand-to-hand combat. Pike was considered to be the backbone of the infantry, but as muskets became more effective the use of the pike declined.

Frequently asked questions

So do I have to bring my own pike with me?

No, pikes are supplied by the regiment and brought to events.

You will be expected to 'book in' a few days before an event so we know how many to take.

It looks a bit dangerous

Fighting pike is no more dangerous than contact sports such as rugby and injuries are rare.

You will receive full training before taking to the field.

What kit will I need?

On top of your normal uniform of jacket, breeches and hose, you will need:

  • A helmet known as a Morion.
  • Thick gloves.
  • A sturdy pair of boots.
  • some of our pikemen also wear protective metal armour.

But don't worry, your helmet and kit can be lent to you by the regiment for your first few musters.

So What Does a Pikeman Do

A pike block is made up of between nine to 20 people, standing in rows of three. On the field, the Manchester's pike block is commanded by an experienced officer.

The block fights in one of two ways. Fighting is mainly done with the 'pike push', where two pike blocks raise their pikes, move into a scrum-like formation and drive forwarded in an effort to push their opponents over.

As well as being very tiring and physically demanding work, pike pushing takes a lot of skill. But being a member of the block gives a real sense of being part of a team and an extraordinary adrenaline rush.

We also fight at 'charge', which means standing in a line two or three men deep so pikes can be levelled at the enemy to stand or advance.

The Manchester's pike block is well regarded in the Sealed Knot and has won the Army of Parliament's annual pike push competition several times.

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Commander of Pike

Phil Toner Phil Toner:

"I am in charge of the pike block when we are on the field. I have been involved with pike many years now and still enjoy its competitive aspect."

"I take great pride in seeing my block sending the opposition crashing to the ground."

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