Top things to do in Yorkshire this summer - Events and Festivals
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What’s on in Yorkshire this summer (2016)?

The summer of 2016 is shaping up to be a good one in Yorkshire with events ranging from family fun to food festivals with more than a few country shows thrown in for good measure. So make the most of the (hopefully) warmer months and get out and about to these top picks!

Food festivals

food festival

Wetherby Food Festival, 8th – 10th July

This three – day event, now in its 3rd year, includes street food, local produce and speciality bars along with wine tasting, live music and importantly to keep the little ones happy there is also a selection of children’s entertainment.

Foodies Festival – Harrogate, 19th – 21st August

Foodies Festival is the biggest series of Food Festivals in the UK and will be coming to Harrogate this August. The perfect day out if you are serious about food – you’ll get to see some top chefs, including Aldo Zilli, cook up a storm and there are a plethora of specialist tents and theatres to try and taste new things to your hearts content.

Filey Food and Drink Festival, 13th and 14th August

While you do have to pay to enjoy the above food festivals, this Filey event is completely free to attend and includes a whole range of delicacies such as ale, cider, pies, jams, bread and cheese all made by local Yorkshire producers.

Music and the arts

Burton Agnes Festival

If a bit of culture is more your thing, then Yorkshire doesn’t disappoint this summer. Below is just a sample of some of the events on offer:

Harrogate International Festivals

Harrogate is home to a series of events and festivals throughout the summer including a month long Music Festival which sees a range of classical and jazz performances at locations throughout the town during July, and a Crime Writing Festival taking place between the 21st and 24th July at the Old Swan Hotel (a favourite of Agatha Christie).

Ryedale Festival, 15th – 31st July

This popular annual festival has been called ‘The Jewel in Yorkshire’s cultural crown’ by The Guardian and features events at various locations throughout the area including Castle Howard, York Minster and Helmsley Arts Centre. This year includes the music of Beethoven and Bach and the poems of TS Eliot read by Jeremy Irons.

The wonderful lakes and gardens at Castle Howard

Jazz and Blues Festival Burton Agnes, 1st – 3rd July

Want to hear the best of Jazz and Blues music in the magnificent setting of the Elizabethan Burton Agnes Hall? Then this is the festival for you. Take your own picnic and alcohol or choose from a wide selection on offer at the event while listening to some fabulous music, it really is a great day out for the whole family.

The Great Yorkshire Fringe, 15th – 17th July

Who needs the Edinburgh Fringe Festival? This York version has more than 300 shows including comedy, theatre, music and cabaret, all performed at various locations in and around Parliament Street.

Great Yorkshire Fringe

Family Fun

Show in the Park, York Racecourse, 30th – 31st July

This two-day family friendly festival includes a wide range of activities so that everyone is kept happy. You’ll find everything from a petting zoo to Monster Trucks and plenty of food and drink options.

Show in the park

ParkFest –, Danby National Park Centre, 24th July

This free Sunday Fun Day showcases the best of the North Yorks Moors National Park with local food stands and family activities from cooking demonstrations to medieval spear practice.

Home Page - North York Moors

MoorFest – Sutton Bank National Park Centre, 31st July

The sister event to ParkFest with activities on offer including trails and walks, face painting, storytelling, food tasting and craft making.

SeaFest, Scarborough, 29th – 31st July

The place to be for all things nautical (not to mention the live music, cooking demonstrations from top chefs and local crafts). This free event by the sea side includes live tours of the Royal Navy HMS Explorer, World Food Stalls and a firework display at 9.30pm on the Saturday night.

Seafest, Scarborough

Great Yorkshire Shows!

Of course a summer in Yorkshire wouldn’t be complete without visiting at least one country show. There are lots to choose from with many towns and villages hosting their own. Each typically includes livestock and produce competitions, horse and dog shows, sheepdog trials and an array of stalls and family events.

Yorkshire Show 2

Here are just some of the shows you can attend while in Yorkshire this summer:

Malton Show – 3rd July

Saltersdate Hunt Country Show – 23rd July

Ryedale Show – 26th July

Weeton Show – 31st July

Thornton-le-Dale Show – 3rd August

Osmotherly Show – 6th August

Ripley Show – 14th August

The Great Yorkshire Show, 12th – 14th July

The highlight of the show calendar is, of course, the Great Yorkshire Show which is the biggest and best of its type with over 1,200 stalls. You’ll be spoilt for choice with a vast array of exhibitions and demonstrations. Try your hand at Blacksmithing with special beginner sessions or sample the best culinary delights of the region with the Food Show.

Yorkshire Show

Other events worth a visit this summer include:

Kettlewell Scarecrow Festival, 13th – 21st August

This quirky festival involves lots of, you’ve guessed it, scarecrows. Follow the trail round the picturesque village and call in the local pubs and cafes en-route.

Kettlewell Scarecrow Festival

Masham Steam Engine and Organ Rally, 16th and 17th July

An annual event (now in its 51st year) in the village of Masham which pays host a vast array of engines, tractors, wagons and miniature steam engines. .

Leyburn 1940s Weekend, 23rd and 24th July

Step back in time and celebrate all things 1940s with music, dancing, vintage outfits and much more.

What are your plans for the summer? Do you have any suggestions that we haven’t included here? For more information on what’s going on in Yorkshire this summer please contact us on 0844 736 6276 or by email at

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