Your Bedford weekend starts here: 14 – 16 June 2019

Bedford Suspension bridge and St Paul's Church

Let’s get the weekend on…


Quarry Theatre

On Friday, virtuoso pianist Helen Crayford presents her one-woman show, Rags to Riches – Rhythms of ragtime and early jazz, at the Quarry Theatre.

The show is guaranteed to get your feet tapping to the irresistible rhythms of Ragtime and early Jazz. Prepare to be taken on a whistle stop tour from 1890-1940, all performed in period costume, featuring composers as diverse as Scott Joplin. “Jelly Roll” Morton, George Gershwin and “Fats” Waller. All proceeds to Bedford Hospital Charity. At 6.45pm Tickets: £15.

Dr and the Medics were created almost at the dawn of the 80’s by The Rev Dr. Clive Thomas Jackson (read the Bedford Clanger’s interview with the Rev Dr here).

The band are performing their great live show – including their massive 1986 No 1 Spirit in the Sky – at Esquires this Friday night. Tickets: £18.95

Friday & Saturday

You can catch Lysistrata: the Sex Strike (by Germaine Greer and Phil Willmott, after Aristophanes) this Friday and Saturday night at the Place Theatre.

Athens is in the grip of a futile, destructive war with Sparta and its men are fighting abroad, taken away from their wives and families for long periods at a time.

The women of Athens have had enough. At dawn, in a men’s bathhouse, leading society woman Lysistrata gathers an assembly of Athenian and Spartan women to discuss negotiating a peace treaty. Their tactics are simple: they will refuse their men sex until peace is declared.

Hilarious, bawdy and profound, the story of Lysistrata continues to delight audiences worldwide.Tickets: £12.00 (concessions £10.00) Age 15+


Black Tom Big LunchThe Black Tom Big Lunch is back for its third year and in association with the Jo Cox Foundation’s Great Get Together all residents of Black Tom are invited to a community street party this Saturday. From midday, bring a dish to share, enter the baking competition, listen to live music or just relax in the company of friends and neighbours.

Fiver Fest 2019

Fiver Fest draws to a close this Saturday, so make the most of the deals to be had at over 70 of Bedford’s independent shops. Lots more information on the Town Centre Champions website.

Refugee WeekRefugee Week Launch

11am – 4pm Free – The Higgins Bedford
Enjoy live music, talks, poetry, creative workshops and information, celebrating the beginning of a busy programme of events for Refugee Week in Bedford. The launch will include the opening of Kwibuka Rwanda – Remembering Rwanda, a travelling exhibition from Pitt Rivers Museum.

The 25th Commemoration of the Rwandan Genocide Against the Tutsi

Saturday 15th June, 2pm – 5:30pm Free – The Higgins Bedford

Hear stories at the Urumuri commemoration for the 25th anniversary of the Rwandan Genocide against the Tutsi. The exhibition, developed by Dr Julia Viebach and Pitt Rivers Museum, looks at the many memorials marking the sites where the genocide took place.

2 – 4pm: Commemoration, Castle Room

4 – 5:30pm: Exhibition & Refreshments, Sir William Harpur Gallery

Who is Bedford?There are two FREE performances of Who is Bedford taking place this Saturday.

11am at Faraday Community Centre
2.30pm at Putnoe Heights Church Centre

Join Full House Theatre and The Higgins for an interactive performance, exploring the heritage of Bedford and the people who live here.

Did you know Bedford has the largest Sikh Temple outside of London? And one of the largest Italian populations outside of Italy?

With over 50 ethnicities represented in the town, Bedford is one of the most culturally diverse towns of its size in the UK. Who is Bedford? will be a celebration of everything that makes Bedford the vibrant town it is today, with stories from the children who go to school here, as well as their parents, grandparents and friends.

The show combines interactive audio technology with artefacts from The Higgins Museum. Cost: Free! Just turn up. Experience lasts around 40 minutes. Suitable for all ages.

Harrold Pit Run

The Harrold Pit Run has been going since 1983 and was established for the same reason it continues today: to provide a great day for villagers and visitors alike, and help raise money for village charities via runner sponsorship and trade on the stalls and attractions on The Village Green.

The event encompasses five races from a short kids race up to a fully marshalled three mile race around the village of Harrold and the surrounding countryside. Fun-runners, fancy-dressers and serious PB hunters alike all mix in at the start line in front of The Village Green.

There is lots to do for all the family, and this year’s event promises to bigger and better than ever. We hope to see you there!

Event opens at 12.30pm with children’s races from 1.30pm. The main race begins at 3pm.

Bedford Choral Society

Bedford Sinfonia and Bedford Choral Society perform pieces by Bizet and Puccini at Bedford Corn Exchange this Saturday.

Soloists Elizabeth Bottone (soprano), Ben Thapa (tenor), Andrew Slater (bass) , Conductor Ian Smith perform Bizet Te Deum, Bizet Symphony in C and Puccini Messa di Gloria
Bedford Corn Exchange at 7.30pm. Tickets: £16

999 at Bedford Esquires

Punk veterans 999 return to Bedford Esquires, with support from Tokyo Rankers + acoustic punk from Rich Taylor. Doors 8pm. Tickets £11 from Seetickets and Danny’s Bar at Esquires


A special showcase night this Saturday on the new stage in Esquires’ Holy Moly’s, Featuring:  Mundays / Supersonic / The Burke Brothers / Flamin’ Wet Gurus…and across the hall in the bar: Melanie Quinn / Will Day / Chris Hepworth / Domenico Borromeo / Andrea Bonito
From 8pm. Free admission


Emmaus Village Carlton’s popular car boot sale is back –  free entry from 10am.  (School Lane, Carlton, MK43 7LQ). The event will raise vital funds for Emmaus Village Carlton. The local charity supports 42 formerly homeless people by giving them a home, meaningful work and an opportunity to regain lost self-esteem to help rebuild their lives.

Pitches are available to pre-book – £6 for cars and £10 for vans (trailers an additional £4). Advanced pitch purchases can be made at the books department till situated in the Emmaus Village Carlton Bistro building. Sellers are also welcome to turn up on the day when cars will be charged at £8 and vans £12. Pitches will be allocated on a first come first served basis. For more information call 01234 720826.

Bedford Tour Guides

This Sunday’s guided walk explores the Jewel in Bedford’s Crown, the River Great Ouse.

During the Victorian & Edwardian periods the banks of the River Great Ouse in Bedford was the place to spend one’s leisure time. Whether promenading or pleasure boating, the Embankment was the place to be seen.

This entertaining and informative circular walk along the banks of the River Great Ouse, described as being one if the finest riverside settings in England, takes in the Victorian Embankment, the bridges & ornamental gardens.

Meet at the Old Town Hall, St.Paul’s Square close to the gold plated letter box. Cost £3 per adult & children over 8 years old £1.50. Due to their popularity walks must be pre-booked. Booking information here.

Eid in Bedford

From midday on Sunday, join in the multi-cultural Eid In Bedford Festival, the free annual family event attracting thousands – and officially Bedfordshire’s second biggest free open festival.

This year’s event boasts children’s funfair and play area, variety of bazaars, bubble-zorb arena, bouncy castle, gladiator duel, tug-of-war tournament, sumo suits for children and adults, climbing wall and more.

Everyone is welcome, invite your neighbours, friends and family to experience how Muslims celebrate their festivities! #EidInBedford #BedfordEidFestival

Porcelain Hill

Porcelain Hill play the Sunday Afternoon Session at Bedford Esquires.  The high-energy, rock and roll band perfectly blends blues, soul, funk, and punk. From 5pm. Free admission

Brought to you in association with Explore Bedford and the Bedford Clanger.