What’s on Bedford: 2 – 12 May 2024

1902

Your weekly what’s on guide for Bedford and the surrounding area from The Bedford Clanger

Never miss a thing in Bedford ever again. From theatre to film, live music to art exhibitions, The Bedford Clanger what’s on guide lands every Thursday and is the only guide you need to know what’s on and what’s happening across the Borough for the next 10 days.

The Bedford Clanger’s What’s On Guide is kindly sponsored by The Cellar Bar.


Thursday 2 – 6 May 2024

Family fun: James Richards Circus
Great Denham Country Park @ times vary (please check website for details)
Tickets: £10/£12

Generic circus performer Image: Pixabay

You are invited to sit back, relax, clap, cheer – and to become part of the much loved tradition of British Circus, invented in London 255 years ago.


Thursday 2 May 2024

Dancing: Planet Swing featuring The Umbrella Big Band
The Dance Hall, Wixams Retirement Village, Bedford Road, Bedford, MK42 6EA @ 8pm – 10.30pm
Tickets: £12.99

An evening for dancers and music enthusiasts alike. Cashless bar, plenty of seating (night club set up) and dance floor. Book in advance and come along at 7.15pm for a 45 minute dance class in Balboa, one of the original swing dances of the era. For the main event, just turn up – pay cash at reception – have fun, no booking needed.


Thursday 2nd May 2024

Live music: Karaoke
The Cellar Bar @ 8.30pm
Free entry

The Cellar Bar is the only place for karaoke on a Thursday on the High Street; no free drinks or gimmicks, just 50,000+ songs to choose from. Hosted by Matt Bedford, you can perform like a pro with professional lighting, sound and a proper stage. Sing with friends with multiple microphones.


Thursday 2 May 2024

Quiz: Esquires Monthly Music Quiz
Bedford Esquires @ 8pm
£2 per person / max six people per team

Brain cells at the ready, it’s Esquires music quiz and everyone’s welcome. Featuring music from the 50’s to the present, it’s £2 per person to enter with teams of up to six.


Friday 3 May 2024

Live music: A Certain Ratio + Special Guest: Ellen Beth Abdi
Bedford Esquires @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £25

For a band whose path has intersected with the lives of Joy Division, The Fall, Talking Heads, Madonna and Grace Jones, to now be immersed in their most creative and prolific period since the early 1980s, puts the great majority of their contemporaries to shame. Formed in 1977, ACR have a new album, produced by Dan Carey, and will visit Bedford as part of their extensive UK tour. 

FFO: Section 25, The Teardrop Explodes, Magazine, Crispy Ambulance


Friday 3 May 2024

Dance music: A Certain Ratio After Party
Herd, St Cuthbert’s Street
Entry: £5

The mighty A Certain Ratio are coming to sprinkle their northern funk magic on the denizens of Bedfordshire for one night only at Esquires, so the team at Herd thought they’d make that night last a little longer with an after party, starring ACR stalwart Martin Moscrop.

Accompanying Martin will be long-term ACR devotee, Bedford-resident and veteran DJ/writer, Bill Brewster, aided and abetted by Gav Kendal. For those of you unaware, ACR rose to prominence in the last days of the 1970s and early 1980s as one of the greatest products of Tony Wilson’s Factory Records, playing a twisted Mancunian version of the soul, disco and funk they listened to, locked in with Donald Johnson’s powerhouse rhythms, aided by core members Jez Kerr and, of course, Martin Moscrop.

Entry is just a fiver which will give you night’s worth of boutique entertainment for the price of a Starbucks fluffy coffee. Dress to sweat.


Friday 3 May 2024

Live Music:  MoonDog & The SunCats
The Cellar Bar @ 8.30pm
Free entry

The Cellar Bar hosts the pioneering auteurs of ‘schwafflepop’ MoonDog & the SunCats. They are not just a band, but more of a fun experience in melodic storytelling and they have just released their debut EP.


Friday 3 May 2024

Dance music: DJ Luck and MC Neat
Bedford Corn Exchange @ 8.30pm
Tickets: £19.25

Get ready for an epic night of old school garage vibes as Give Me Garage brings you the legendary DJ LUCK & MC NEAT live in person!


Saturday 4 and Sunday 5 May 2024

Beer festival: Beer and Beyond Festival
Brewpoint, Cut Throat Lane @ noon til late
Tickets: £10 including wrist band, festival glass, first Brewpoint beer free* and entry for the whole day

With an incredible line up of Brewpoint beers as well as guest kegs from top-notch UK breweries Jubel, Yonder, Northern Monk, Beyond Belief and Brew York, guests can enjoy a veritable ‘top of the hops’ from the UK craft beer scene. The festival promises an unforgettable experience for all, whether you’re a curious newcomer, or a seasoned beer aficionado!

Guests can enjoy live music all weekend and discover talented artists spanning various genres, all with a crisp beer in hand. There will be two music areas, the Brewpoint beer garden where the live acts will be showcased, and the beer tent where the resident DJ will be taking centre stage!

Meanwhile, a top-class line-up of local, gourmet food trucks will mean guests can choose fromsome lip-smackingly tasty tucker to fuel their beer fun. Vendors will include Bedford favourites Chicken George and Caw’s Burger, alongside Brewpoint’s very own brick pizza oven.

*Core beers only, including Supernova, Lodestar, Foghorn, Genesis and Anchorman


Saturday 4 May 2024

Family fun: Pop Princesses
Bedford Corn Exchange @ 1pm

A magical show where beautiful Princesses become Pop Stars! This is the children’s pop concert with a big difference. The four fabulous Fairy tale Princesses are back with their new show for 2024. It’s the perfect mix!

Featuring a soundtrack of top pop hits from artists such as Little Mix, Ariana Grande, Taylor Swift, Meghan Trainor and Miley Cyrus, plus all the best songs from all your favourite Films and Musicals. Come and join the fun!


Saturday 4 May 2024

Classical music: Bedford Sinfonia
St Paul’s church @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £12/£5

A variety of 19th century works conclude Bedford Sinfonia’s 2023-2024 season of orchestral music, conducted by Ian Smith.

The programme will consist of Rossini’s Overture ‘The Italian Girl in Algiers’Siegfried Idyll, Wagner’s exquisitely musical Christmas present for his wife, Cosima, Dvorak’s Czech Suite, opus 39, dances descriptive of the Bohemian countryside, and Schubert’s Symphony No. 4 ‘The Tragic’, a title which, although designated by the composer, belies its bubbly, youthful vitality.


Saturday 4 May 2024

Live music: ABBA Forever
Bedford Corn Exchange @ 8pm
Tickets: £29.15

ABBA Forever are recognised as one of the best live recreations of ABBA Live in Concert and theatre audiences worldwide have long enjoyed this superb recreation of possibly the world‘s greatest pop band.

In their amazing live show, the unique ABBA sound is replicated with incredible attention to detail, using a six-piece band featuring electric and acoustic guitars, keyboards and piano, drums, and bass guitar. Two outstanding ABBA girls complete the line-up, adding the essential glitz and glamour to a well-polished and gently humorous show.

Packed full of excitement and exuberance, dazzling costumes and authentic lighting design, ABBA Forever will take you on a journey back to the 70’s; the show is guaranteed to delight – from the opening refrain to the final sing-along chorus.


Saturday 4 May 2024

Live music: CASH – payin’ respect to the Man in Black
Bedford Esquires @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £14

There’s two types of people in this world: Those who like Johnny Cash and those that don’t know a damn thing about music. CASH are dedicated to making sure as many people as possible get into the know…

The mighty CASH (Johnny Cash tribute) returns to Bedford Esquires for his first show in seven years.

Having lived the life and music of Johnny Cash and other country heroes who came before and since, Ben, aka CASH, has effortlessly recreated the sound, vibe and appeal of the master himself.


Saturday 4 May 2024

Live Music:  Double Header – The Stalkers + Five Five Six
The Cellar Bar @ 8.30pm
Free entry

The Stalkers will be playing a full one-hour set in ahead of Five Five Six.

They are back!

If you’ve not seen Five Five Six at The Cellar Bar before, you are in for a treat, get ready for a great night of legendary rock tunes.  The Cellar Bar literally rocks when these guys play! If that’s not enough they will be supported by The Stalkers playing a full 1 hour set.  This is a late, late event.


Saturday 4 May 2024

Live music: Sounds Mint + City Parking
Bedford Esquires @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £10

They were so good at Ceremony Festival recently that Esquires had to get them back sharpish, SOUNDS MINT and CITY PARKING return to the club on bank holiday weekend.

Big vibes, punk energy and clashy, fuzzy guitar sounds a SOUNDS MINT gig is exciting, raucous and bags of fun. They’ve recently supported Blur on tour and are destined for big things.

Recently endorsed by Yard Act, Sheffield’s CITY PARKING are a mix of post punk guitar, gurgling electronics and deadpan lyrics. Fans of Dry Cleaning will find a lot to love here.


Sunday 5 May 2024

Walking: “I Never Knew That” guided walk
Bedford Town Centre @ 11am at the gold postbox in St Paul’s Square
Tickets: £3/£1.50 (Please use the code HIGGINS30 to remove the transaction fee)

The most commonly heard phrase after the completion of a Guided Walk. This Walk encompasses all that information about Bedford and its many features that YOU never knew!

Join the Association of Bedford Tour Guides for one of their fascinating weekly walks. Each walk is of 90 minutes to two hours duration and covers a distance of one or two miles. Most walks are suitable for people who are less mobile.

Children of all ages are most welcome on all of the walks but those aged 12 and under must be accompanied by an adult. Each walk costs £4 per adult or £2 for children over 8. All walks must be pre-booked.


Sunday 5 May 2024

Live music: The A Band play the Sunday Afternoon Session
Bedford Esquires @ 5pm
Free entry

Bruce Murray, Pete Bonas, Mark Ayles plus Richard and Tim Winter are the A Band.

One of Bedford’s longest running bar bands, they’ll be at Esquires on bank holiday Sunday afternoon for their mix of classic rock and soul covers, with a few of their own songs thrown in for good measure.


Sunday 5 May 2024

Live music: Hillbilly Moon Explosion
Bedford Esquires @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £20

The Hillbilly Moon Explosion are coming to town for the very first time after the Esquires team have been trying to book them for many years.

Formed in 1998 in Zurich, Switzerland, The Hillbilly Moon Explosion are a melting pot of rockabilly, surf, blues and country, fronted by the incredible Emanuela Hutter. The band have released a whole load of albums over the years, including their much lauded sessions with long term collaborator, Sparky from Demented Are Go.


Sunday 5 May 2024

Live music: The Orielles + Thick Drizzle
Bedford Esquires @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £14

The Orielles are back in Bedford Esquires on Bank Holiday Sunday 5th May.

Since forming in the West Yorkshire town of Halifax, over a decade ago whilst still in their early teens, the Orielles have journeyed from lo-fi DIY indie origins (Silver Dollar Moment, Heavenly Recordings 2018) to Stereolab and A Certain Ratio-inspired avant-pop (Disco Volador, Heavenly Recordings 2020), even directing and scoring their own experimental film (La Vita Olistica, 2021).


Monday 6 May 2024

Sport: Come and try it taster session – kayaking and canoeing
Viking Kayak Club, Star Rowing Club, Riverside Square @ 10am – 3pm
£5/30 minutes

Come and have a go at canoeing or kayaking with the Viking Kayak Club. All equipment is provided, including buoyancy aids and helmets. Their fully qualified instructors will be on hand to get you on the water and keep you safe while you try out this fun activity.

There is no need to book, just turn up and register at the reception desk. Suitable for anyone aged eight and above but you must be able to swim. Make sure you wear clothes and shoes you do not mind getting wet!


Tuesday 7 May 2024

Live music: Tuesday lunchtime concert
St Paul’s church, St Paul’s Square @ 1pm
Free entry with retiring collection (suggested donation £5)

This week’s recital is by Aidan Si (piano).


Wednesday 8 May – Saturday 11 May 2024

Community Theatre: Educating Rita
The Place Theatre@ 7.30pm
Tickets: from £12.50

Rita has enrolled on an Open University course to discover herself and better her circumstances. Her tutor is Frank; a jaded academic and an alcoholic who is less than enthusiastic about taking on an open university student. Yet he’s fascinated by her take on life and realizes she has potential.

An insightful look into the ways that social class and education can shape who we are, and a careful study in the uncertainty of transformation as we go through life wishing for something we don’t have.

Willy Russell’s hysterical, thought-provoking modern classic Educating Rita premiered in 1980 at the RSC and went on to win multiple awards not to mention being adapted for a feature film starring Julie Walters and Michael Caine.


Thursday 9 May 2024

Theatre: Under Milk Wood
The Quarry Theatre @ 7.30pm
Tickets: from £16

Celebrating its 70th anniversary, Olivier Award winner Guy Masterson celebrates his own 30th anniversary with Dylan Thomas’ enduring masterpiece – Under Milk Wood: a day in the life of a fictional sea-town somewhere in Wales…

In an amazing feat of memory and physical virtuosity, Masterson recreates all 69 of Dylan Thomas’ wonderfully ebullient inhabitants entirely on his own.


Thursday 9 May 2024

Film: The Miracle Club
Stevington Cinema Club, Stevington Village Hall, MK443 7QT @ 6.45pm
Tickets: £6

In 1967, a group of women travel to the religious shrine at Lourdes in search of different forms of healing.

This gently emotional Ireland-UK drama contains allusions to abortion, suicide and illness.


Thursday 9 May 2024

Dancing: Planet Swing featuring Grandma’s Wooden LegMinnie and the Moochers
The Dance Hall, Wixams Retirement Village, Bedford Road, Bedford, MK42 6EA @ 8pm – 10.30pm
Tickets: £12.99

An evening for dancers and music enthusiasts alike. Cashless bar, plenty of seating (night club set up) and dance floor. Book in advance and come along at 7.15pm for a 45 minute dance class in Balboa, one of the original swing dances of the era.

For the main event, just turn up – pay cash at reception – have fun, no booking needed.


Friday 10 May 2024

Theatre: Bowjangles: Dracula in Space
The Quarry Theatre @ 7.30pm
Tickets: from £22

Forget everything you think you know about string quartets, Bowjangles are an irreverent, anarchic group of genre-spanners, bringing music, theatre and coming together in a way you’ve never seen before.

With over 15 years of performing under their belts, Bowjangles have performed all over the world from rural village halls to concert halls, festivals and street performances, hospitals and the occasional prison. In 2019, the company made their off-Broadway debut, performing at SoHo Playhouse, New York. Dracula in Space is a hilarious and totally original musical comedy that sees the award-winning foursome blasting into outer space to meet a mysterious benefactor whose proposition seems a little too good to be true…


Friday 10 May 2024

Classical music: Philharmonia Concert – Beethoven and Mozart with Martin Helmchen
Bedford Corn Exchange @ 7.30pm
Tickets: (limited availability) £16.50 – £44

Alessandro Crudele – conductor
Martin Helmchen – piano

BEETHOVEN Overture, Fidelio

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 16, K. 451

BEETHOVEN Symphony No. 4

With his ability to shape “lines as elegant and clean as a Greek temple’s” (The New York Times), Martin Helmchen has a natural affinity with Mozart’s music. Mozart composed his Piano Concerto No. 16 as a vehicle for his own gifts, resulting in a piece that drips with apparently effortless elegance.

Beethoven’s Fourth Symphony is a sublimely beautiful work that exudes a fresh-air, outdoorsy feel, with an exhilarating first movement, idyllic Adagio, spirited third movement and exuberant finale. Beethoven starts the concert, too, with a work-out for the orchestra in the form of his adventurous Fidelio Overture.


Friday 10 May 2024

Live music: Izo Fitzroy + Mia Rae
Bedford Esquires @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £15

Raw, dynamic performances and honest songwriting have become the trademark of gospel blues singer-songwriter Izo FitzRoy.

Her powerful vocal delivery and unique storytelling set her apart from contemporaries and a collaboration with Dimitri From Paris. Gospel, blues, jazz, funk, folk and soul are all present in her most accomplished album to date with her live band and gospel choir replicating on record, the magic the magic she brings to her live shows.

FFO: Gregory Porter, Janis Joplin, Bill Withers


Friday 10 May 2024

Live Music: Samantha Hughes
The Cellar Bar @ 8.30pm  
Free entry

Samantha has become a regular at The Cellar Bar, having previously performed at Twinwood Festival and the Festival of Vintage. She was previously a British champion on the mandolin and banjo.

Samantha’s set will be part acoustic so you are in for a treat as she plays a selection of Rock n Roll, Country, 50s/60s and 80’s party tunes, spreading some good old fashioned music from years gone by.


Friday 10 May 2024

Live music: Danni Nichols + special guest Sarah Peacock
Friday 10 May
Bedford Esquires @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £15

Hailing from Bedford and now based in Nashville, Danni Nicholls returns for another hometown show featuring a local all-star band of Sam Barrett, Luke Tuchscherer and Dave Banks. The wind still in her sails from three consecutive Americana Music Association UK award nominations plus extensive tours, Danni, her powerful, arresting voice and her dynamically poetic original songs are ever-gaining presence and reach.


Saturday 11 May 2024

Walking: North Bedfordshire Ramblers’ weekly walks
Sharnbrook Surgery car park, MK44 1PT @ 10am
Bolnhurst, St Dunstan Church on Thurleigh Rd, MK44 2HB @ 1.30pm

Ramblers of all abilities are sure to find a walk to suit at the Bedfordshire Festival of Autumn Walks. Image: North BedfordshireRamblers
Ramblers of all abilities are sure to find a walk to suit at the Bedfordshire Festival of Autumn Walks. Image: North BedfordshireRamblers

The North Beds Ramblers morning walk is a 12-mile circular walk towards Knotting Green, into Risely and returning via Bourne End.

The afternoon walk is through fields and woodland in Bolnhurst. Seven miles and meet at 1.30pm

Check out the North Bedfordshire Ramblers’ excellent website for further information.


Saturday 11 May 2024

Market: Bedford Craft Market
Silver Street/Silver Square @ 10am – 3pm

Silver Street Craft Market at Christmas 2023. Image: Bedford Borough Council
Silver Street Craft Market at Christmas 2023. Image: Bedford Borough Council

Sliver Street and Silver Square will host this month’s Bedford Craft Market, with local makers, artists and crafters.


Saturday 11 May 2024

Dance music: Herd Alldayer
Herd, St Cuthbert’s Street @ 2pm til late
Tickets: £17.50

After the success of their 2022 Alldayer, the team at Herd will be clearing out the tables, polishing the floor and perfecting the sound to do it all again this May. The event features DJs Rocco Rodamaal (France), Atjazz (Arco), Craig Smith (SPW, Suncbeat), The Journey Men (residents) & DJ Carlene (D.I.S, Switch) and the Herd All Stars – George James, Dave Christie etc.


Saturday 11 May 2024

Music: Elaine Delmar: A Celebration of George Gershwin and Cole Porter
The Quarry Theatre @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £18

Elaine Delmar has long been established as a singer of the very highest calibre. A British Jazz legend with the voice, looks and personality that have captivated world-wide audiences through her many stage and television appearances – including work on Broadway, The West End, as well as the UK’s finest concert venues, including The Barbican, The Royal Albert Hall as well as regular visits jazz venues such as London’s Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club.

In this very special concert, Elaine explores the incredible library of music composed by George Gershwin and Cole Porter.  Featuring a sparkling collection of their best-known compositions, alongside a selection of lesser-known gems and reworkings of classic arrangements.


Saturday 11 May 2024

Live music: Sing the Musicals
Bedford Corn Exhchange @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £26.95

Direct from London’s West End, the first national tour of the greatest musicals of all time performed by a sensational live band and character singers, giant screen with singalong lyrics.

Join in with classics from Mamma Mia, The Greatest Showman, Grease, Dirty Dancing, Les Miserable, Phantom of the Opera, Rocky Horror Picture Show, Mary Poppins, Oliver!, We Will Rock You and more…


Saturday 11 May 2024

Live music: Miles Hunt (The Wonder Stuff) acoustic + Sunsinger
Bedford Esquires @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £21

The Wonder Stuff’s Miles Hunt is back on the road to perform songs from his latest album Things Can Change, alongside classics from his 36-year career.

For the new album, Miles did what he’s always done and wrote about things that were happening around him, and what had happened to him in the past. Endeavouring to make the music as uplifting as possible, Miles came to accept that we live in a constant state of flux – things can, and will, change. But one thing that he can always be sure of is that his community of friends and family keep him from sinking.

Miles Hunt is the singer of the highly successful The Wonder Stuff, and also briefly of Vent 414. His solo career began in 1999 and he has released four studio albums – From ‘Hairy On The Inside’ (2000), to this year’s ‘Things Can Change’.

His live shows are famous for cracking anecdotes and stories. This is a seated show so capacity is limited. Seats taken on a first come first served basis.


Saturday 11 May 2024

Live Music: Double Header – Last Laugh Lane + Cameo
The Cellar Bar @ 8.30pm
Free entry

Last Laugh Lane return to The Cellar Bar playing cassic throwback indie anthems of the 2000’s including The Killers, Arctic Monkeys, Kaiser Chiefs, Razorlight and Kings of Leon.

Cellar Bar favourite Cameo is also back for another solo performance, so expect a beautiful voice and some cracking party tunes! From Dolly Parton to Fleetwood Mac to The Red Hot Chili Peppers and so much in between, be ready for a cracking party night.


Sunday 12 May 2024

Shopping: Bedford Flea, Affordable Art and Local Produce Market
St Paul’s Square @ 10am – 3pm

It’s the most wonderful time of the year – yes, Bedford Flea season is back and we cannot wait to see what 2024 has in store for us!

As ever, from 10am until 3pm you’ll find stalls in St Paul’s Square, right in the heart of Bedford, with 40 local businesses represented. Launched in 2018, Bedford Flea was originally conceived as a way to drive much-needed Sunday footfall into the town centre. Six years (and a global pandemic) later and it’s certainly delivering on its aim, with thousands of visitors coming from near and far.

A visit to Bedford Flea is the perfect way to enjoy your Sunday, so take a stroll along the Embankment, grab a coffee, have a mooch around Bedford’s indie shops and cafes and then hit the market.


Sunday 12 May 2024

Walking: “The Silent Faces of Bedford” guided walk
Bedford Town Centre @ 11am at the gold postbox in St Paul’s Square
Tickets: £4/children over 8 £2 (Please use the code HIGGINS30 to remove the transaction fee)

Bedford has many impressive statues and memorials. They cannot speak for themselves but our guides can tell you their story and why they take their place in Bedford’s history. 

Join the Association of Bedford Tour Guides for one of their fascinating weekly walks. Each walk is of 90 minutes to two hours duration and covers a distance of one or two miles. Most walks are suitable for people who are less mobile.

Children of all ages are most welcome on all of the walks but those aged 12 and under must be accompanied by an adult. Each walk costs £4 per adult or £2 for children over 8. All walks must be pre-booked.


Sunday 12 May 2024

80s music:  Retro Vibes
The Cellar Bar @ 3pm – 7pm
Free entry

Fancy dancing along to some 80’s retro bangers on a Sunday afternoon? Have a few drinks, party hard and still make it home at a reasonable hour or stay out? Then head to the Cellar Bar on the second Sunday of the month where you’ll be transported back in time to an 80’s retro nightclub where night and day become one!

Come with your bright neon colours, shoulder pads, puffed sleeves, animal prints, leather, and lace or as you are! 80s dress optional.


Sunday 12 May 2024

Live music: The King Bees play the Sunday Afternoon Session
Bedford Esquires @ 5pm
Free entry

Esquires welcomes The King Bees back to the Sunday Session. Marc Patching – Guitar/Vocal, Tony Morton – Drums, Stewart Noakes – Keys, Stephen Pagano – Bass.


Sunday 12 May 2024

Live music: Taylor Mania – Taylor Swift Eras tribute concert
Bedford Corn Exchange @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £26.95

An award-winning extravaganza that plays tribute to one of the leading contemporary recording artists of our time. Katy Ellis a self-obsessed ‘Swiftie’ with an incredible live band and dancers promises to deliver the most authentic recreation of a Taylor Swift show you will ever see

The show has already taken Swiftie fans across the world by storm and features all of Taylor’s much-loved hits including Shake It Off, Blank Space, Love Story, You Belong With Me, Look What You Made Me Do, I Knew You Were Trouble and many, many more.


At the Higgins Bedford

Exhibition: Edward Bawden & Me
The Higgins Bedford until
Free entry

Sussex Lustreware are among the featured artists at the Edward Bawden & Me exhibition at the Higgins from 17 February. Image: The Higgins Bedford
Sussex Lustreware are among the featured artists at the Edward Bawden & Me exhibition at the Higgins from 17 February. Image: The Higgins Bedford

Brand new work by some of the biggest names in contemporary British art, illustration and textiles are on display at an exhibition at the Higgins Bedford in celebration of the work of one of Britain’s most inventive and influential artists

Entitled Edward Bawden & Me, the exhibition has been curated by Bawden’s good friend, illustrator and printmaker, Chris Brown and also features work by local artists’ collective, the Circus of Illustration.

Read: Star-studded new Edward Bawden exhibition opens at the Higgins Bedford

You can also read the full article in the February issue of The Bedford Clanger.


Exhibition: On The Wings of a Wire Bird
Higgins Bedford
Free entry

Artist Sophie Gresswell with one of the pieces from her new exhibition at the Higgins Bedford. Image: Bedford Borough Council
Artist Sophie Gresswell with one of the pieces from her new exhibition at the Higgins Bedford. Image: Bedford Borough Council

A new exhibition in the Higgins’ Sir William Harpur Gallery is the result of a year-long journey that has taken artist, Sophie Gresswell, from Luton to the island of St Helena and finally to Bedford.

On the Wings of a Wire Bird opened on Saturday, 3 February and weaves together the threads of empire, destruction, survival, and the enduring impact of Commonwealth heritage on the British identity.

Read: Local artist explores “rich thread of mixed heritage” in new exhibition at The Higgins Bedford


At the Panacea Museum

Exhibition: ‘Panacea: A Cure for All Ills’
Thursday – Sunday @ 10am – 4pm
Free entry

Free healing. Image: Panacea Museum

The current exhibition at the fascinating Panacea Museum explores the ministry which gave the Panacea Society its name.

Originally titled ‘The Community of the Holy Ghost’, their more famous name came later, connected with their international Healing offer. The Society sent out linen squares, blessed by their leader Octavia, these were placed in water to make a therapeutic elixir.  

This exhibition explains the origins of the Healing, how it became so well-known, and why it finally ended.
Entry to the museum and exhibition is free. More information about visiting the museum can be found on their website here.


Every Thursday

Cocktails, Quiz Night & Karaoke
The Cellar Bar from 5.00pm

Pit your wits against The Cellar Bar’s resident quizmaster to see if you can win the jackpot every Thursday from 8pm. £2 per person entry and a maximum of six per team. The winning team will win the jackpot PLUS a round of shots. Followed by Karaoke til close


Every Saturday

Food & drink: Cocktail mixology masterclass
The Cellar Bar @ 3pm / doors open at 12 noon
£30 per person

The Cellar Bar’s resident mixologist, Marley, will explain how to create some outstanding cocktails for your tasting enjoyment. Then, it’s your turn to put what you’ve learned into practice by making (and drinking) three cocktails!


Every Sunday

Live Music: Open Mic Night
The Cellar Bar @ 7.30pm
Free Entry

Guitar, open mic night

Every Sunday, join Mat Roberts for the Cellar Bar’s weekly Open Mic night. An opportunity for new and experienced performers to get up on stage and perform.

So whether you think you are the next Tom Grennan or just want a good night of entertainment, head the to Cellar Bar from 7.30pm.


Theatre highlights by Paula Walker

The May issue of the Bedford Clanger is out now and available to pick up from indie shops, restaurants, cafes, pubs, museums, galleries, libraries, theatres and more.