Your Bedford weekend starts here: 31 May – 2 June 2019


It’s festival fever this weekend in Bedford with two street food events, the Kite and Motoring Festival plus the Run Bedford 10k.


There are still plenty of half-term activities taking place over the weekend before it’s back to school on Monday. Check out the full listing at the Explore Bedford website, including events at the Higgins and libraries.

street foodRound off half term week with a trip to StrEAT Feast this Friday. As ever, there will be street food trucks, music and more on Riverside Square over-looking the River Great Ouse. Bon appetit!

Lost 4 Words playing live at the Flower Pot this Friday night.

Sessions for St John’s 2.0 is from 7pm at Esquires this Friday. Featuring Bad Racket, Carlos Linnett, Wenz Day (Green Day tribute), Domenico Borromeo, Workshop Boys and Long Walk. All money raised donated to St John’s School in Kempston.

At the Place Theatre (from 28 – 31 May), catch Journey to the Impossible. The year is 1982, and three kids are in trouble.

Bored one day, they try to get into their uncle’s mysterious attic and suddenly find themselves opening a door onto a parallel dimension: the city of Vernopolis, where no one has fun anymore.

By means of Dip Dabs, walkie-talkies and magical bandanas, you’ll be taken with them through the Improbable and the Unlikely, via the Intriguing and the Unethical, all the way back to where you started – not much older, hardly any wiser, but glad you went. Tickets: £12 (family ticket: £32)

Pioneers of the London Acid Jazz scene, The Brand New Heavies will be at Bedford Corn Exchange on Friday night.

Over the years The Brand New Heavies have been responsible for some of the UK’s biggest R & B/ soul tracks, scoring 16 top 40 singles including ‘Dream On Dreamer’ and ‘You’ve Got A Friend’, as well as over two million album sales.

They have been ploughing their own furrow the British music scene for over a quarter of a century and are respected the world over. Do not miss them live this weekend, here in Bedford with support from DJ’s ‘Brother’ Louie Martin and Mark Russell.  Tickets: £25.50

The Roar Club and Club Biscuit are delighted to be bringing one of their all-time favourite bands, ART BRUT(Top of the Pops!) back to Bedford Esquires this Friday.

Art Brut are one of those bands who bring people together, bizarrely not enough people to fill stadiums, but everyone remembers their first Art Brut gig.

Describing themselves as ‘the sound of a man shouting over the top of some indie racket’, Art Brut are actually one of the best live acts of the past two decades and Eddie Argos is the finest frontman since Jarvis Cocker. All together now ‘ART BRUT! TOP OF THE POPS!!’ Tickets: £15


Inspired by the Round and Round the Garden exhibition, the Higgins’ garden volunteers will be running a plant sale in the museum courtyard from 11am – 3pm. Visitors can also explore the Castle Gardens in a free, half hour tour to discover more about the volunteer-led project to rejuvenate the gardens and grounds.

Funds raised will help to improve the Castle Gardens and support the continuing work of garden volunteers. Donated plants are welcome.

Booking is essential for the Garden Tour and the Lunchtime Lecture with Twigs Way. To book your place or make a donation towards the garden project, please email


FoodDrunk 004 returns to Esquires this Saturday (noon – 11pm) with the added bonus of 20 craft beers and ales, amazing bands, artists, DJs and the blender pop-up record shop.

Esquires’ car park will be transformed into a mini food market (from 11am) while the blender pop up record shop will open at 9am for discerning crate diggers. The DJ line up is curated by Roll Your Own Records, in between the live acts.

Freeway play live at the Flower Pot on Saturday night.

May Contain Nutz will be live at the Foresters Arms this Saturday from 8.30pm

Is it even possible to have too much ABBA? Let’s hope not, as it’s ABBA night at Esquires this Saturday, with themed attire encouraged all sound-tracked by wall-to-wall sounds of the 70s and 80s. From midnight, there’ll be 90 minutes of non-stop Benny, Bjorn, Agnetha and Anni-Frid.

[Disclaimer – the organisers take no responsibility for any ABBA-induced withdrawal symptoms the following week!]


On Saturday and Sunday (from 11am), the Bedford International Kite Festival is once again returning for a summer’s weekend of family fun in Russell Park!

New for 2019, the Embankment will be hosting the inaugural Bedford Festival of Motoring, sponsored by Motorvogue Motorpark, meaning the weekend of 1st & 2nd June will truly be buzzing in Bedford, including kite flying, family entertainment, fuunfair rides, special vehicle displays, iconic, bizarre, luxurious and classic cars and motorcycles, the popular craft marquee plus food and drink stalls.

On Saturday, Party in the Park will end the day with be an evening  DJ set of laid-back vibes, hosted by the folks behind the Dance Stage at the 2018 River Festival. One night only, so don’t miss out.  Entry: FREE


Run Bedford 10k

This year’s Run Bedford 10km race takes place at 9am on Sunday 2June and follows a course along Bedford’s loveliest avenues. Come along to cheer on the runners along the route, starting and ending on the beautiful Embankment. Full details of the route here.

This week’s guided walk is ‘The Rise and Fall of Bedford Castle’ where you will learn all about the Royal Charter, a not so ‘civil’ war and a castle removed stone by stone.

View the castle mound and the site where Bedford’s motte & bailey castle once stood and hear why it is no more. Join the Tour Guides this Sunday to hear the story of the long, hot summer of 1224 when Bedford was centre-stage as King Henry III brought the might of the realm to bear upon the town’s castle.

Meet at the Old Town Hall, St.Paul’s Square close to the golden letter box. Cost £3 per person (pre-booking essential).  To book and for more details: at

Boyds of Bedford bike meet
The Boyd’s of Bedford All Types Bike Meet is back for its June outing this Sunday, to coincide with the Festival of Motoring just along the Embankment. From 1pm – 4pm, St Paul’s Square welcomes all forms of two-wheeled transport from choppers to crotch rockets(!), cafe races to cubs. There will be even more bikes to check out at at the festival too.


This Sunday Dom will be playing jazz, pop, funk and soul on the sax at Decant Wine & Cheese Deli. From 2 – 5pm.

Your Bedford weekend is brought to you by the Bedford Clanger in association with Explore Bedford.