The man behind the open-air historical show Kynren has paid tribute to the volunteers who make up the cast.
The outdoor night-time performances which feature battles, jousting and a firework finale on a bend of the River Wear below Auckland Castle, in County Durham, attracted more than 100,000 visitors last year and its second season is set to get under way this weekend.
Jonathan Ruffer believes local people have already taken on the project as their own.
He said: "You have nothing without the volunteers. If you said to them 'Whose show is this' the answer is 'It's ours. We were the ones who stood in the cold doing the practice for hours, who threw our lives into it'."
The production has a cast and crew of 1,500 people.