“Thank Freyr!” – Viking Weather God Brings the Sunshine for the Re-opening of JORVIK Viking Centre | JORVIK Viking Centre

Explore the Jorvik Group

Explore the Jorvik Group


Crowds in Coppergate were basking in the sunshine for the long-awaited re-opening of the JORVIK Viking Centre in York this morning, following its £4.3 million re-imagining. The sights, sounds and smells of 1000 years ago are now once again giving visitors an immersive experience of the Viking-age city.

Vikings parade up Coppergate Walk“We are incredibly proud of what we have achieved in a relatively short period of time – this is the fourth incarnation of JORVIK Viking Centre and without a doubt, the best yet. The response from our previews has been fantastic, and we can’t wait to hear what the visitors think about the new attraction,” comments director of attractions, Sarah Maltby.

Indeed, work only started on rebuilding the Viking city in June 2016, following six months of cleaning, drying out of the building and repairs. The world-famous Viking attraction closed its doors on 27 December 2015 when flood water from the nearby River Foss inundated the underground attraction, causing huge damage to the recreation of 10 th century Jorvik (the Viking name for York) and the artefact galleries, although all of the historic collection of artefacts was rescued unharmed.

With glorious sunshine and blue skies for the opening marking a complete contrast to the dark skies and heavy rain that prompted the flooding, the future looks bright for one of York’s top visitor attractions, which welcomed 18 million visitors since it first opening in 1984. “The Norse gods are clearly smiling on us today – a fantastic reception from the first visitors, a lovely queue of people waiting to come and be amongst the first around, and plenty of Viking entertainment in the square outside to keep them in high spirits whilst they wait,” adds Sarah.

Once inside, visitors enjoyed three different zones inviting them to discover, experience and explore Coppergate. Discover Coppergate tells the story of the archaeological dig, undertaken by JORVIK Viking Centre’s owners, the educational charity York Archaeological Trust, in the late 1970s and early 1980s which exposed the unrivalled and incredibly preserved remains of a street in the Viking city. A 16 minute ride through a recreation of the very street that was unearthed enables visitors to experience the sights, sounds and smells of the period, complete with 22 new animatronic Viking-age characters, 12 animatronic animals – including chickens, rats, pigs, cats and even eels – and even a Viking boat, moored at the wharf on the Foss, populated by live Viking actors.

The final section is a stunning new artefact gallery, encouraging visitors to explore the archaeological artefacts unearthed during the dig, including the Anglo-Saxon York Helmet, which was buried by one of York’s Viking residents, the only woollen Viking sock ever found in England, and even a fossilised Viking coprolite (poo) that gives us a fascinating insight into the diet of York’s residents during the Viking age.

The Sampson family from Selby are the first visitors to the new JORVIK Viking Centre

The first family through JORVIK Viking Centre was the Sampson family from Selby. Erin (10) commented, “Awesome – I loved the ride!” whilst her little sister, Ava (7) particularly enjoyed the children’s commentary. Sue Sampson added, “I’ve been a couple of times before with school trips but I think this is just brilliant – and it is amazing to think that everything you see was all here. Just amazing.”

Director of Attractions Sarah Maltby -centre- welcomes the Sampson family

Although all of the prebooked tickets for the first week have already been purchased, tickets are available throughout the opening weeks for walk-up visits. JORVIK Viking Centre is open daily from 10.00am to 6.30pm during the Easter holidays. Admission prices are £10.25 for adults, £8.25 for concessions and £7.25 for children, with a family ticket available for £30.95 (two adults and two children) or £32.95 (two adults and three children). For more details, please visit www.jorvikvikingcentre.co.uk.


Notes to editors:

Additional photographs from the launch day and images of the new attraction are available for immediate download from:


The press pack for JORVIK Viking Centre is available from:


For further media information, please contact:

Jay Commins
Pyper York Limited
Tel: 01904 500698
Email: [email protected]