– Our History –
Valhalla York opened in September 2017 and became an instant success with York residents and travellers alike. Set up by two York mates our aim for Valhalla was quite simple. We started as one of the smallest venues in the city with a humble but unique approach – cosy, friendly & open to all, a venue that paid homage to Yorks Viking heritage and somewhere with purely Rock ‘n Metal music in its soul.
In 2021 Valhalla relaunched after the Covid pandemic as a much larger and grander venue with more space, more comfort, more beer ‘n ale, more food and with even more determination to make its mark on the world.
At Valhalla you won’t find a museum – far from it. You’ll find a unique venue with a handcrafted, labour of love interior. You will find some of the very best craft beer ‘n ale, food fit for the Gods, a world of mead to explore, and if you like a bit of AC/DC , Ozzy or Iron Maiden and the like then look no further! We’ve had a wild ride since we opened but the journey has only just begun.
York – A Very Brief History
York boasts a proud and diverse history. The Roman Ninth Legion established the City in 71AD and it has played a prominent part in the history of Britain for centuries. Circa 210AD, York or Eboracum as the Romans named it, was granted the honour of becoming the capital of Britannia Inferior, a new province carved out within Roman Britain. Some 650 years after this date, the Vikings first attacked Anglo-Saxon York. Named Eoforwīc by its Anglo-Saxon inhabitants, The Great Heathen Army led by Halfdan and Ivar the Boneless launched their attack on November 1 866AD. This was All Saints Day, which was an important festival at the time in York, and when most of its leaders were most likely within the cathedral. Therefore, the surprise attack was effective and the Vikings took Eoforwīc and renamed it Jórvík.
The Viking Faith
At a time when life and death happened frequently, a person’s faith was paramount and the Vikings held strong beliefs in the abilities and powers of the gods. They also took great interest in the resting place of the deceased, and ensuring that the dead could enjoy this finality was of paramount importance. Vikings believed that the dead would eventually pass across to one of the many gods, for example warriors who fell in battle would either go to Valhalla (a majestic hall) with the Viking god Odin, or pass to Folkvang (a meadow or field) with Freya.
Valhalla, or Valhöll in old Norse, means the hall of the slain. It is a majestic hall located in Asgard and ruled over by Odin. In Valhalla, the dead join those who have already died in combat (known as Einherjar), in addition to various other legendary Germanic heroes and kings. Here, they help Odin as he prepares for the events of Ragnarök. Ragnarök in Norse Mythology is a series of future events, where the earth will endure a great battle of the gods and will be submersed by its oceans and seas. Following this, the earth will emerge anew and the surviving gods will return along with just two human survivors. From these two, future generations of humans will be born. Until Ragnarök, the Einherjar are free to drink and feast within the halls of Valhalla. Throughout time, Valhalla has inspired literature, popular culture and it continues to be regarded as an afterlife for honoured dead within Germanic and other Teutonic contexts.