Gladiators | JORVIK Viking Centre

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A Cemetery of Secrets

In 2004-5, eighty burials, dating from the early 2nd century to the late 3rd century AD, were unearthed in York. This site was part of a large cemetery on the outskirts of the Roman town of Eboracum, across the river from the legionary fortress. The discoveries displayed evidence that so intrigued the archaeologists that further investigation was needed. This search for answers, which is ongoing, has suggested that these people could have been a group of gladiators, who lived and fought in York during the Roman occupation.

Gladiators – A Cemetery of Secrets

is an exhibition that features the skeletal remains of six of the men, all of whom were decapitated and suffered injuries prior to death, buried in this cemetery alongside other burial evidence from Roman graves across York. Recent research has added to the story and uncovered more about who these men were, where they came from, how they died and why.

To accompany the exhibition is a hands-on area for children that allows them to explore a Roman market with associated activities and games, plus AV material and replica costume, helmets and armour.

“Working in partnership with York Archaeological Trust (The JORVIK Group) to project manage the exhibition was a pleasurable and rewarding period that brought great rewards to the City including; 6 new jobs, 2000 visitors in the first 3 months, book signings, special lectures, school visits and a 98% visitor satisfaction rate.  It was an amazingly positive scheme that brought a vacant premises back into use”.

Peter Coe
Regeneration and Development Manager – Durham County Council

Size and Content

Our exhibitions are designed for spaces between 150 and 200 square metres. However, the nature of our exhibitions allows for them to be adapted to fit smaller or larger spaces, with a bespoke design for your venue included as standard.

The exact exhibition content is reviewed on a venue-by-venue by basis. Previous exhibitions have included:

  • A selection of original artefacts
  • Showpiece item
  • Themed family-friendly area with activities
  • Interpretation panels and labels
  • Bespoke site-specific content
  • Replica items
  • AV material

Please note that due to the nature of the original artefacts provided, including human remains, certain environmental and display criteria will apply. Full details of these will be provided by our curatorial team.

Hire Fee

Our standard fees are £12,000 for 3 months, £18,000 for 6 months, and £25,000 for 12 months. All prices are exclusive of VAT.

Since no two venues are the same, our prices can be flexible to reflect your budget and the scale of the exhibition.

What’s Included in the Price?

The hire fee covers the exhibition content, essential marketing collateral and installation & demount by our experienced team.

The hire fee does not include travel and transport costs, or the cost of insurance (damage, theft, and public liability) whilst in transit and on site.

The JORVIK Group can also provide supplementary material and support services relating to marketing, learning, staff training, and retail at an additional cost.


For more information and to see how we can work with your venue, please contact

Sarah Taylor, Exhibitions Manager, on 01904