What’s on Bedford: 30 November – 10 December 2023


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.

With thanks to our What’s On Guide sponsors, The Cellar Bar, Bedford.

Friday 1 December 2023 – Monday 1 January 2024

Festive family fun: Christmas at Wrest Park
Wrest Park, MK45 4HR @ 4pm – 7.30pm
Tickets: From £23/adult, £17.25/child (off-peak)

Bedfordshire is home to an all-new light trail set within the stunning grounds of Wrest Park, English Heritage’s 18th-century stately home in Silsoe near Clophill.

Until 1 January, visitors can expect the unexpected as they immerse themselves in a world of seasonal sparkle, festive cheer and let the spirit of Christmas take over.

Wrest Park’s beautiful grounds will have festive visual surprises around every corner accompanied by festive food and warming cocktails for an enchanted Christmas with family, friends and loved ones.

Read more here.

Until Friday 1 December 2023

Theatre: A Christmas Carol – adapted by Karen Louise Hebden
The Quarry Theatre @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £10/£8

Bedford School invites you to join their boys as they perform this well-loved Christmas story for three consecutive nights at the Quarry Theatre.

This new stage adaptation of Charles Dickens’ famous novel is far more faithful to the original than any other published version. It is a gothic tale that will captivate audiences with skilful acting and stagecraft – a show not to be missed!

Until Saturday 2 December 2023

Community Theatre: A Christmas Carol
The Place Theatre @ 7.30pm
Tickets: from £10

In Dickens’ great ghost story for Christmas, Ebenezer Scrooge is haunted by three spirits and faces up to his past, present and future.

An acclaimed dramatisation of Dickens’ well-loved Christmas story – more faithful to the original than any other published version and making skilful use of traditional carols to underscore the action.

Thursday 30 November 2023

Dancing: Planet Swing featuring The Gary Wood Swing Band
The Dance Hall, Wixams Retirement Village, MK42 6EA @ 8pm
Tickets: £12

Suitable for dancers and music enthusiasts alike! Cashless bar, plenty of seating (night club set up) and a dance floor. Come along at 7.15pm for a 45-minute dance class in Balboa (additional payment), one of the original swing dances.
Book in advance for the dance class, but for the main event, just turn up and have fun, no booking needed.

Friday 1 December 2023

Community: National Romanian Day
Harpur Square and Harpur Suite @ midday – 8pm
Free to attend

Romanian Union Day, celebrated annually on 1 December, is a national holiday that symbolizes the unity of the Romanian people and the realization of their national aspirations. It is a day of reflection, pride, and celebration of the shared history and identity of the Romanian nation.

On Friday, 1 December, a celebration of Romanian culture will take place in Bedford town centre. Romanians are now the fourth largest community in Bedford and everyone is invited to come and find out about their culture and traditions.

Food from local Romanian shops will be on sale in Harpur Square from midday. From 4pm the Harpur Suite will open with an exhibition and information stalls. At 6pm the Romanian flag will be raised over the old town hall followed by the traditional dance called ‘Hora Unirii’, which will be performed by a troupe of professional dancers. From 6.30pm, the celebrations will move into the Harpur Suite for more dancing, singing and children activities.

Everyone welcome.

Friday 1 December 2023

Live music: 80s Live!
Bedford Corn Exchange @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £27.50

You’ve made it through the wilderness, somehow, you’ve made it through and now we’re never gonna give you up at the biggests 80s paty show in the UK.

Travel back in time to one of the most iconic eras of music, for the night out you have been dreaming of – put your hands together and get into the groove as ‘Electric Dreams’ perform over two dozen chart topping anthems from artists including Wham!, The Weather Girls, Culture Club, Rick Astley, Madonna, Duran Duran, Soft Cell, The Human League, A-Ha, Tears for Fears and more.

Blending pop and soft rock, the show includes hits such as Girls just Wanna have fun, Edge of Heaven, Tainted Love, Love Shack, Living on a Prayer, The Final Countdown, Don’t You Want Me Baby, Relax, Never Gonna Give You Up, It’s Raining Men, Rio and the list goes on.

With a sensational cast and live band, this is just what the doctor* ordered.

*Doctor Doctor (Thompson Twins), Dr Robert (Blow Monkeys) or Dr Beat (Miami Sound Machine) – which 80s doctor, we’re not sure.

Friday 1 December 2023

Live music: Wolfsbane + The Spangles
Bedford Esquires @

The band were formed by schoolmates Jeff Hateley and Jase Edwards in 1984. Joined later by Blaze Bayley and Steve Danger, Wolfsbane was born with a mission to form the greatest band in Tamworth. With Steve came a van… and they were on the move! Tamworth was not enough. Nowhere near enough!!

Fast forward to 2023 and the band have reformed and they’re on the road again.

Friday 1 December 2023

Live music: Cameo
The Cellar Bar @ 8.30pm / bar opens @ 6pm / Happy hours 6pm – 8pm
Free entry

Cellar Bar favourite Cameo is back for another solo performance, with a beautiful voice and some cracking party tunes.  Singing classic rock/pop songs from Dolly Parton to Fleetwood Mac to The Red Hot Chili Peppers and so much in between, be ready for a great party night.

Saturday 2 and Sunday 3 December 2023

Festive fun: A Very Merry Bedford Christmas Market Weekender
Riverside Square, Harpur Square,
Free entry

This festive extravaganza is brought to you by Love Bedford, the team behind Bedford Flea, Affordable Art and Local Produce Market, and Bedford Borough Council. 

Festivities will include live music, street food, mulled wine, antiques, vintage, art and crafts, gifting, locally produced food and drink, flowers, wreaths plus the Love Bedford Express Land Train.

The hugely popular Bedford Flea, Affordable Art and Local Produce Market will form the base of the market, so you will find Flea, Local Produce, Street Food and live music in Harpur Square. And over on Riverside Square there will be an Affordable Art and Makers tent full of talented local artists, jewellers and ceramicists.

The Council’s own Bedford Markets will be hosting a festive craft and gift fair from the Harpur Suite alongside seasonal entertainment throughout the town and the weekly Charter Market on St Paul’s Square and Midland Road.

Read: Your essential guide to festive fun in Bedford this Christmas

Saturday 2 December 2023

Festive family fun: Great Denham’s Winter Wonderland
Great Denham Community Hall, MK40 4GP @ 2pm – 6pm
Free entry

Ticket price: The event itself is free to attend but we’re selling tickets for Santas Grotto £3.50 (includes crafts and a present) and Kiddies Fair rides (unlimited turns) £3

Everyone from the local and wider community is invited to come along and enjoy Great Denham Community Hall’s annual Winter Wonderland community event. 

There will be lots of stalls, tasty treats, face painting and our very own Community Choir performing carols to finish our event off.  Tickets are also on sale for a visit to see Santa (£3.50), which includes making crafts and a gift from Santa himself, as well as children’s fair rides to keep the little ones entertained (£3 for unlimited rides).

Saturday 2 December 2023

Festive music: Unisong Christmas Concert
St Owen Church Bromham @ 2pm
Tickets £10 (under 14s £5)

Unisong is a mixed, adult community choir in Bromham, Bedford which offers a warm welcome to everyone, regardless of musical ability or experience.

They are holding a Christmas concert at St Owen’s Church in Bromham with a fundaising raffle for BECHAR (Bedford Concern for the Homeless and Rootless). Ticket price includes refreshments.

Saturday 2 December 2023

Live music: From the Jam
Bedford Corn Exchange @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £32.50/£37.50

From the Jam were formed in 2006 when Russell Hastings and Rick Buckler (ex-The Jam drummer), who were touring as The Gift, joined forces with Bruce Foxton (ex-The Jam bassist and songwriter), to form From The Jam. Russell Hastings has been the only frontman to work with both Rick Buckler and Bruce Foxton since Paul Weller.

All Mod Cons was the third studio album by The Jam and was released in 1978. The LP featured singles Down In The Tube Station At Midnight, ‘A’ Bomb In Wardour Street, and David Watts. From The Jam will be performing the whole All Mod Cons album in full along with more hits and fan favourites of The Jam.

Saturday 2 December 2023

Live Music:  Double Header – Tiptoe Apollo & Five Five Six
The Cellar Bar @ 8.30pm / bar opens @ 6pm / Happy Hour until 9pm / 3am close
Free Entry.  Bar opens at 6.00pm, Happy Hour until 9.00pm.  3.00am close.

Tiptoe Apollo head to The Cellar Bar this week for their debut performance. They will be playing classic covers from Arctic Monkeys, Nirvana, The Strokes, The Cure, Foo fighters and many more.

They played at The Dublin Castle as a support act in September 2022 and were asked to go back and headline in November. They are officially the youngest band to ever perform or headline there. Not to be missed!

They will be joined by Five Five Six (pictured) making their return to the Cellar Bar. Get ready for a great night of legendary rock tunes.

Saturday 2 December 2023

Live music: Special Kinda Madness
Bedford Esquires @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £14

Special Kinda Madness

Special Kinda Madness make a welcome return to Bedford Esquires with their classic take on Madness and The Specials.

Performing a truly authentic set from each band, Special Kinda Madness combines the phenomenally energetic stage presence of The Specials with the wonderful iconic tunes of the Madness ‘Nutty Boys’. Playing a set from each band and producing a show that will have the audience up and dancing from the off, Special Kinda Madness will have everyone hankering after that exciting era of 2-Tone and ska.

Saturday 2 December 2023

Club night: Start! – From the Jam and Special Kinda Madness after party
Bedford Esquires @ 10.30pm
Tickets: £4

On Saturday 2 December, Bedford town finds itself with some big crowds out and about watching live music with From the Jam and The Skids performing at the Corn Exchange and Special Kinda Madness at Esquires.

To continue the fun late into the night, the legendary Esquires Night Club will open for a post-concert after-show Party straight after the gigs.

Kicking off from 10.30pm, Esquires will be hosting two rooms of music with four DJs spinning the finest sounds of Brit Pop, New Wave, 60s, 70s, 80s, 2Tone, Reggae, Ska, Trojan, Indie Bangers, Funk, Soul and more.

Pad Room: Kev Bailey (The Pad Nightclub) + Pete Burridge (Esquires)

Bar: Benjamin Sonny Fay + Matty Davis (Fay / Davis)

Tickets free to all Special Kinda Madness gig goers and free before 11:30pm for all other customers / £4 after.

Sunday 3 December 2023

Poetry: Swan Poetry Evening: Another Midwinter Chill
The Eagle Bookshop @ 7pm
Tickets: Free but please book via The Place Theatre website

Join the Swan Poetry Society for their monthly reading of poems reflecting the season. Listen to poetry, song and tales to chill your blood and disturb your sleep.

This monthly event takes place at The Eagle Bookshop in St Peter’s Street.

Sunday 3 December 2023

Ballet: Crown Ballet presents Swan Lake
Bedford Corn Exchange @ 2.30pm and 7.30pm
Tickets: £24/£26

Crown Ballet presentsthe most famous Ballet of all time: Swan Lake.

One of Tchaikovsky’s best-known works, Swan Lake features some of ballet’s most memorable music and breath-taking dance.

Swan Lake is a tale of two young women, Odette and Odilie, who resembles each other so strikingly one can easily be mistaken for the other.

It is the compelling legend of a tragic romance in which a princess, Odette, is turned into a swan by an evil curse. Prince Siegfried chances upon a flock of swans while out hunting. When one of the swans turns into a beautiful young woman he is instantly captivated – will his love prove strong enough to break the evil spell that she is under?

Swan Lake is full of mystery and romance and has captured the imagination of generations over the years and it continues to attract worldwide audiences, young and old.

A wonderful matinee or evening out and memories which you will cherish long after the final curtain falls.

Sunday 3 December 2023

Live music: The X-Certs play the Sunday Afternoon Session
Bedford Esquires @ 5pm
Free entry

It’s the X-Certs last gig of 2023 at Esquires’ Sunday Afternoon Session. “Always a fun afternoon with an audience who really know their music.”

Monday 4 December 2023

Film: Bedford Film Society presents – Lunana The Yak in the Classroom (PG)
The University of Bedford, Polhill Avenue @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £69/annual membership, £5/day guest

A young teacher in modern Bhutan, Ugyen, shirks his duties while planning to go to Australia to become a singer. As a reprimand, his superiors send him to the most remote school in the world, a glacial Himalayan village called Lunana, to complete his service.

He finds himself exiled from his Westernized comforts after an arduous eight-day trek just to get there. There he finds no electricity, no textbooks, not even a blackboard. Though poor, the villagers extend a warm welcome to their new teacher, but he faces the daunting task of teaching the village children without any supplies. He wants to quit and go home, but he begins to learn of the hardship in the lives of the beautiful children he teaches, and begins to be transformed through the amazing spiritual strength of the villagers.

Visit the Bedford Film Society website to sign up to become an annual member (£69/year). Alternatively, anyone can turn up before showtime (7.30pm) and pay £5 on the door as a non-member.

Wednesday 6 – Sunday 10 December 2023

Festive family fun: Bedford Christmas Tree Festival 2023
St Paul’s Church @ Wednesday – Saturday 10am – 5pm, Sunday noon – 4pm
Entry: £3 (under 16s free)

The ever-popular and much-anticipated Christmas Tree Festival is back and this year’s theme is Kings and Queens. Enjoy over 60 trees decorated by local groups, schools, organisations and businesses, all vying for the coveted ‘best tree’ award.

There are daily festive performances from local choirs and music groups.

Everyone welcome.

Wednesday 6 December 2023

Christmas: Fizz at the Festival
St Paul’s Church @ 6pm – 8pm
Tickets: £8 in advance from 07909 521997 or email treefestival@stpaulschurchbedford.org.uk

Bedford Christmas Tree Festival

Enjoy fizz and canapés with friends and colleagues at this private viewing in sparkling evening light, open to everyone. All in aid of St Paul’s church and Bedford Hospital Charity & Friends

Wednesday 6 December 2023

Film: Cinema @ 3 St Peter’s presents – In Bruges
3 St Peter’s Street @ 7pm
Tickets: £12/£10.50/£9/£6

In Bruges is a dark comedy-crime narrative set against the quaint backdrop of Bruges, Belgium, directed with a keen eye by Martin McDonagh.

The tale of two Irish hitmen, portrayed with depth by Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson, delves into themes of guilt and redemption in a manner both humorous and sombre.

Ralph Fiennes as their boss Harry adds a layer of menacing tension to McDonagh’s sharp script with dark humour punctuating the heavy themes, making the narrative engaging. While the film explores moral ambiguities and personal atonement, its witty dialogue and well-timed comedic elements make “In Bruges” an enjoyable watch for those who appreciate a blend of humour and introspection in storytelling.

Wednesday 6 December 2023

Comedy: Hosted by Simon Hall of Simon Says Comedy
The Cellar Bar @ 8.00pm.  Doors open at 7.00pm
Tickets: £10 for four fabulous acts.

Cellar Bar comedy headliner, Alasdair Beckett-King Image: abeckettking.com

After the incredible success of the Cellar Bar’s last comedy event, they’re returning with another four outstanding comics including Julius Howe, Natasha Cluskey, Jade Gebbie and headliner, Alasdair Beckett-King.

Hosted by Mr Sparkly Boots himself, Simon Hall.

Tickets are non-refundable and you will be asked to show your ticket with QR code on the door.  Only people with a valid ticket will be allowed entry to the venue.

Thursday 7 December 2023

Dancing: Planet Swing featuring The Untouchables
The Dance Hall, Wixams Retirement Village, Bedford Road, Bedford, MK42 6EA @ 8pm
Tickets: £12

Planet Swing generic dance and event poster (Swingsters)

Suitable for dancers and music enthusiasts alike! Cashless bar, plenty of seating (night club set up) and a dance floor. Come along at 7.15pm for a 45-minute dance class in Balboa (additional payment), one of the original swing dances.

Book in advance for the dance class, but for the main event, just turn up and have fun, no booking needed.

Thursday 7 December 2023

Festive fun: Neil Sands’ Christmas Memories
Bedford Corn Exchange @ 2pm
Tickets: £13

An unforgettable afternoon of nonstop nostalgia, filled with more songs and carols more stunning costumes and more festive fun than ever before, taking you back to the time when Christmas was the most wonderful time of the year.

So after Rocking Around The Christmas Tree, you can watch Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire, or take a Sleigh Ride to a Winter Wonderland to the sound of Jingle Bells, meeting Rudolph The Red Nose Reindeer and Frosty The Snowman on the way, before dreaming of A White Christmas.

Then be transported back to a heart-warming Victorian Carol Concert including Silent Night, Oh Come All Ye Faithful, Deck The Halls, Away In A Manger, Ding Dong Merrily On High and so many more including  a rousing version of The Twelve Days of Christmas. Wrapping everyone in the true spirit of Christmas. It wouldn’t be Christmas without pop hits like Slade’s Merry Christmas Everybody, Elton’s Step Into Christmas, Wizards I Wish it Could Be Christmas Every Day, and Shakin Steven Merry Xmas Everyone. The festive hits just rock on and on.

Thursday 7 December 2023

Quiz: Esquires Monthly Music Quiz
Bedford Esquires @ 8pm
£2/player, maximum of six players per team

Head to Esquires for their monthly music quiz, featuring music from the 50’s to the present. Teams of up to six people. £2 per person to enter. Cash prize for the winning team.

Thursday 7 December 2023

Fusion: A night of Bandeoke, Karaoke and Jam sessions
The Cellar Bar @ 8pm / doors open at 6pm for Happy Hour
Free Entry to The Cellar Bar

Fusion, is a combination of Bandeoke, Karaoke and Jam sessions with a chance to win £100 cash in the Cellar Bar’s new game Jackpot Joker.   

Whether you’re a seasoned musician or just like to get up and sing your heart out, this night is for you.  With a catalogue of 50,000 songs with lyrics, there’ll be a full band to accompany you if you want. 

If you are a musician who wants to turn up and jam, there’ll be a full drum kit and amps available. Just bring your instruments…plug in and go.

Friday 8 December 2023

Film: Children’s Cinema Sessions
Great Denham Community Hall, 86-88 Saxon Way, Great Denham, MK40 4GP
Tickets: £1.50 (includes a drink and popcorn, no charge for adults or siblings under 2 years old)


Great Denham’s monthly Children’s Cinema sessions welcome all children and their parents/guardians to come and enjoy a family film each month, with popcorn and a drink for the little ones included in the price (no charge for parents/guardians).

The films are always PG or U rated and clues to the movie are advertised on the Great Denham Community Hall social media pages in the week leading up to the session. Can you guess this week’s festive film?

Friday 8 December 2023

Theatre: Oh, Whistle and I’ll come to You, My Lad
The Quarry Theatre @ 7.30pm
Tickets: from £13

Two ghost stories by M R James. Performed by R M Lloyd Parry.

M R James is acknowledged as the master of the English Ghost Story. He first performed his supernatural tales to friends at Christmas in King’s College, Cambridge. Now Nunkie Theatre Company have brought two of these unforgettable spinechillers back to life.
Oh, Whistle, and I’ll Come to You, My Lad – a tale of nocturnal horror on the Suffolk coast – is considered by many to be James’s masterpiece. It is beautifully complemented here by The Ash Tree, a story of witchcraft and vengeance down the generations.

Friday 8 December to Sunday 24 December 2023

Theatre: Alice in Wonderland
The Place Theatre @ various times (see website for details)
Tickets: from £10

The Pantaloons are back again for another exciting winter season at The Place Bedford. Follow the critically acclaimed Pantaloons down the rabbit hole for their own hilarious take on Lewis Carroll’s nonsensical novel. All the unusual suspects are here: the mirthful Mad Hatter, the perpetually late White Rabbit, the quarrelsome Queen of Hearts and, of course, the adventurous Alice herself.

A delightfully anarchic show that gets curiouser and curiouser with live music and audience interaction. A perfect addition to your Christmas celebrations, guaranteed to be a delight for the whole family.

Friday 8 December 2023

Live music: Thank You for the Music – a tribute to ABBA
Bedford Corn Exchange @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £28

Calling all Dancing Queens, this is your night to say, Thank you for the Music!

This international smash-hit tribute show brings all ABBA’s number one hits to the stage in a production like no other. The hugely popular show, now in its 20th year, combines the unmistakable harmonies, colourful costumes, and dazzling performances by our all-star cast.

Join us for the party of the year, you can dance, you can jive, and have the time of your life as we bring you all the hits, including Waterloo, Dancing Queen, Super Trouper, Mamma Mia, Knowing Me, Knowing You, Gimme, Gimme, Gimme, The Winner Takes It All and many many more!

Friday 8 December 2023

Live music: Bedford Christmas Tree Festival Concert
St Paul’s Church @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £20 in aid of St Paul’s Church and Bedford Hospital Charity & Friends

This year’s Festival Concert features the popular Woburn Piano Trio, including members of the world-class Philharmonia Orchestra. This is a truly memorable evening for concertgoers to enjoy the beautiful trees at night in the majestic setting of St Paul’s while raising money for two incredible charities – St Paul’s church and Bedford Hospital Charity & Friends.

The Woburn Piano Trio is Emily Davis (violin), Karen Stephenson (cello) and Sophia Rahman (piano).

Friday 8 December 2023

Live music: Uncle Funk’s Disco Inferno
Bedford Esquires @ 8pm
Tickets: £22

Uncle Funk’s Disco Inferno are the world’s undisputed number one live disco band. Featuring fire effects, acrobatics and the incredible Disco Inferno band, Uncle Funk’s Disco Inferno show is an amazing energetic, choreographed tribute to the greatest era of music – DISCO!

Regularly booked for Glastonbury Festival, Standon Calling and many other huge events/festivals – please note we might not be able to have all the pyro inside the venue!

Friday 8 December 2023

Live Music: Samantha Hughes
The Cellar Bar @ 8.30pm / Doors open at 6pm / Happy Hour 6pm – 9pm
Free Entry

The Cellar Bar is delighted to welcome Samantha Hughes back for an evening of rock n roll, country, 50s/60s and blues music.

Samantha has previously performed at Twinwood Festival and the Festival of Vintage and – impressivley – was previously a British champion on the mandolin and banjo!

These influences can be seen in her style of guitar playing and part of the set will be acoustic.

Friday 8 December 2023

Dance music: Rewind – Garage Anthems
Bedford Esquires @ 9pm
Tickets: £4

Re-e-wind! An entire evening of classic Garage floor fillers.

Saturday 9 December 2023

Walking: North Bedfordshire Ramblers’ weekly walk
Clapham Park MK41 7GE @ 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

A circular 6.5 mile walk through the North Bedfordshire countryside.

Please bring a drink, snack or lunch as there’s always a break during the walk. For more information contact Margaret Sawyer 07780 933729 or check out North Beds Ramblers on social media or on their excellent website.

Saturday 9 December 2023

Film: The Snowman featuring a live performance from Hitchin Band
The Quarry Theatre @ 11.45am &1pm
Tickets: from £5

“The Snowman” by Raymond Briggs is published by Puffin Image © Snowman Enterprises Ltd www.thesnowman.com

A young boy can’t believe his eyes one winter’s night when a snowman comes to life and an unforgettable adventure begins…
Enjoy a special screening of the timeless classic animated film, The Snowman, featuring a live performance of Howard Blake’s musical score, specially adapted for brass band and performed for you by the Hitchin Band together with a pianist and young solo singer.  

Since 2017 Hitchin Band has performed The Snowman to over 7,000 people.  For many, it has become a must-see family tradition marking the start of Christmas.

Saturday 9 December 2023

Live Music: Double Header – Helen Lester & Mat Roberts with J37
The Cellar Bar @ 8.30pm / bar opens at 6pm / Happy Hour until 9pm / 3am close
Free Entry

It’s the Saturday night doubleheader at the Cellar Bar and first up is the wonderful Helen Lester, making her debut at the club. Helen will be performing a wide range of material from across the decades, blowing you away with her powerful vocals and upbeat style. Expect a bit of everything from Motown, pop, sisco, soul and more.

Following Helen is the one and only Mat Roberts and his band J37 for a night of classic covers and party songs.

Saturday 9 December 2023

Live music: The Drifters
Bedford Corn Exchange @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £30

Following their phenomenally successful recent tour, which included dates at London’s Royal Albert Hall and arenas around the UK, The Drifters are back on tour with a brand-new show performing all their classic hits from the last six decades.

The legendary group have been inducted into the Rock & Roll of Fame, performed for the President of the United States and listed among the Greatest Artists of All Time by Rolling Stone magazine.

Don’t miss their brand-new tour performing all the classic hits such as ‘Saturday Night at the Movies’, ‘You’re More Than A Number,’ ‘Come on Over to My Place’, ‘Up On The Roof,’ ‘Under the Boardwalk’, ‘Kissin’ In The Back Row’, ‘Save The Last Dance For Me’, ‘Down On The Beach,’ ‘Hello Happiness’ and many, many more!

Saturday 9 December 2023

Live music: The Devout – Depeche Mode tribute band
Bedford Esquires @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £15

Europe’s premier Depeche Mode Tribute, The Devout, return for another performance at Bedford Esquires.

Saturday 9 December 2023

Music: The Upbeat Beatles
The Quarry Theatre @ 7.30pm
Tickets: £24

The Upbeat Beatles are second to none – powerhouse vocals, precision harmonies and tight musicianship. The guys have an easy, happy rapport with any crowd, giving them a reputation to be envied as the best in the business.

There isn’t a band to touch them – eight bars of “Twist and Shout” and you will know why; no other band can perform this song like The Upbeat Beatles. The show takes you through the Fab Four’s long and winding road from the early Cavern days through Beatlemania, America, Sergeant Pepper to Abbey Road, with narrative and full multi-media presentation.

If you love The Beatles you’ll love this show, and if you don’t love The Beatles you’ll love this show!

Saturday 9 December 2023

Live music: Hallan + guests
Bedford Esquires @ 8pm
Tickets: £10

Portsmouth’s finest, Hallan, are riding high off the back of the release of their latest EP ‘The Noise of a Firing Gun’ their second on tastemaker label Nice Swan (Sprints, Sports Team, Courting, Pip Blom).

The thrilling quartet have built on acclaimed debut EP ‘Reporting Live From The Living Room Floor’, with their newest work seeing the band experiment with production elements and shift their gaze towards synthesised sounds of the ‘80s, whilst retaining their post-punk edge.
Leaving the mundanity of the 21st century behind and turning to real-life events of the past, Hallan bring attention to the stories of historical individuals within their new EP.

Sunday 10 December 2023

Film: The Muppets Christmas Carol
The Place Theatre @ 3pm and 5.30pm
Tickets: £5

Come to The Place Theatre for a joyous singalong screening of The Muppets Christmas Carol! A retelling of the classic Dickens tale of Ebenezer Scrooge, miser extraordinaire. He is held accountable for his dastardly ways during night-time visitations by the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future.

Arguably the greatest version of Dicken’s classic tale of loneliness and redemption ever, we you are invited to an evening of hot chocolate, mince pies and Muppet mayhem. The fun will begin before the showing, perfect fare or a family night out or, if you find yourself on your own, why not come along and meet a room full of likeminded Muppet movie fanatics. Arrive in time to stock up on mince pies!

Sunday 10 December 2023

Music: The Glenn Miller & Rat Pack Era
The Quarry Theatre @ 3pm
Tickets: £27

Recapture the sounds of a bygone era as the Nick Ross Orchestra presents ‘an unmissable evening of music and song’ – the Classic Big Band Sound of the 40s & 50s with a liberal “sprinkling” of very special Christmas Big Band arrangements. Enjoy some music in the bar before the show and during the interval with Ryan McCaffrey (piano), Dave Jenkins (guitar) and Les Cirkel (bass).

Sunday 10 December 2023

Live music: Cheap Thrill$ play the Sunday Afternoon Session
Bedford Esquires @ 5pm
Free entry

Cheap Thrill$ make a welcome return to Esquires for a rock and blues filled Sunday afternoon session.

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.

Until 2024

Exhibition: We Are Ten
The Higgins Bedford, Castle Lane
Free entry

The Higgins begins its 10th birthday celebrations with an exhibition featuring old favourites and rarely seen works from the collection, all chosen by organisations, groups and individuals who have worked with the museum and gallery over the last decade.

The exhibition runs for the next year, with special events planned next month to mark the exact date the museum reopened in 2013. Watch this space for more information.

Until 7 January 2024

Exhibition: Quilla Constance – Teasing Out Contingencies
The Higgins Bedford until January 2024
Free entry

Don’t miss your chance to see eight new large-scale paintings and a costume installation by Bedford artist Quilla Constance (also known as QC) at The Higgins Bedford until 7 January 2024.

As British society becomes increasingly polarised, this exhibition seeks to cross social borders, confront stereotyping, and challenge gender, racial and class inequalities.

QC states “Teasing Out Contingencies seeks to create exciting new narratives to explore: what is British society now and where are we going?” – These are timely questions as we emerge from the Covid 19 pandemic, and as we re-examine our relationship with the British monarchy in the wake of the Queen’s passing and the Coronation of King Charles III.

Read more here: Don’t miss the Teasing Out Contingencies exhibition at The Higgins Bedford

Until 2024

Exhibition: Edward Bawden – Planes, Trains and Automobiles
The Higgins Bedford @ Tues – Sat: 11am – 5pm/Sun: 2pm – 5pm/Closed Mondays
Free entry

The Titfield Thunderbolt 1952 by Edward Bawden. Image: The Edward Bawden Estate
The Titfield Thunderbolt 1952 by Edward Bawden. Image: The Edward Bawden Estate

Let Edward Bawden transport you in this exhibition celebrating all things travel.

Drawn exclusively from the Higgins Bedford’s Edward Bawden archive, see large linocuts of London’s iconic stations and an array of wonderful vehicles from hot air balloons to jumbo jets and tall ships to cruise liners.

Read: New Edward Bawden ‘trains, planes and automobiles’ exhibition to open this weekend

Theatre highlights by Paula Walker