50 Sizzling Summer Shows

Battle Proms

Battle Proms - Credit: Archant

With hopes set on a glorious British Summer, we bring you 50 of the best events the county has to offer. Whether it’s family fun, comedy, music, food or art we’ve got something that will take your fancy right up until September

Folk by the Oak

Folk by the Oak - Credit: Archant

FAMILY. The Woodoaks Summer Festival Woodoaks Farm, Rickmansworth, July 5.

Drawing inspiration from the 1940s community events that took place on the farm, this festival looks to recreate the perfect day for bringing the community together. Main attractions include a 5-a-side football tournament, baking competition and heritage walks, as well as theatre and puppetry performances.


Harpenden Highland Gathering Rothamstead Park, Harpenden, July 13.

Thomas and Liam Graham enjoying Baldock Day

Thomas and Liam Graham enjoying Baldock Day - Credit: Archant

A quintessentially Scottish celebration that represents deep-rooted traditions from the Highlands. Expect to hear bagpipe performances throughout the day, as well as a Highland dancing competition. The ever-popular arena events return this year, including a dog and duck display with plenty of audience participation.


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Wheathampstead Village Weekend Various, Wheathampstead, July 13-14.

Wheathampstead comes to life for one very special weekend. Saturday kicks off with Wheathampstead’s got Talent at The Memorial Hall, followed by Music on the Meads; an evening of relaxed tunes by the river. Sunday is Village Day, beginning memorably with a procession through the High Street.


LolliBop - Credit: Simon Jacobs


The Knebworth Country Show Knebworth Park, Knebworth, July 19-20.

Knebworth’s annual country event includes an equestrian display as well as a wide range of marquees, food and craft stalls. Highlights are the stunt motorcycle demonstration and Sunday’s Companion Dog Show, where you can enter a furry friend into one of many categories for the chance to win a rosette.


Royston Kite Festival

Royston Kite Festival - Credit: Archant

Lollibop, Hatfield House, Hatfield, August 15-17.

Now in its fifth year, the UK’s biggest children’s festival is the perfect day out for families with under 10s. Cbeebies stars Mister Maker and Justin Fletcher will be headlining across the weekend, with CBBC’s Sam and Mark and Postman Pat also making appearances. Alongside the live acts are a host of interactive play experiences exclusive to the festival.


Ashwell Show, Elbrook Meadow, Ashwell, August 25.

Ashwell Summer Show

Ashwell Summer Show - Credit: Archant

A classic show providing traditional entertainment with a large serving of nostalgia. The day will include a Punch and Judy show and falconry displays, while for canine lovers there will be a dog rally and show. Motorbike stunt man Flyin’ Ryan and his team will be on hand to give an exhilarating performance for those looking for a thrill.



Benington Chilli Festival, Benington Lordship Gardens, August 24-25.

Chilifest, Benington

Chilifest, Benington - Credit: Archant

For those who enjoy living on the spicy side of life, this festival is sure to get your taste buds tingling. Local chilli traders will be joined by a number of artisan stalls selling hot food, as well as chilli beer. Not for the faint hearted, the chilli eating competition is set to test even the most hard-core enthusiasts.


St Albans Beer & Cider Festival, Alban Arena, St Albans, September 24-27.

If the hundreds of real ales, ciders and beers available weren’t enough to wet your appetite, three music acts have also been confirmed to provide the soundtrack to your experience at this Bacchanalian festival. These will be Climax Blues Band, Anglo Cuban’s Swanvesta Social Club and country duo Billington and Quinn.


Baldock Day, High Street, Baldock, July 12.

On top of the usual farmers’ and craft market offering a large array of local produce, Baldock Day will be a celebration of everything the town has to offer. Fairground rides and other entertainment for children will also be provided.



Buntsfest, The Bury, Buntingford, June 28.

With two music stages, a late night dance tent and a 30 stall market, Buntsfest has all the makings of a great day out. Also on offer will be a silent auction selling off signed memorabilia as well as alternative attractions such as zorbing, ensuring everybody’s needs will be catered for.


Chilfest, Cow Lane, Tring, July 4-6.

As the name would suggest, Chilfest, with its all-star line-up, is about enjoying music in a family and eco-friendly atmosphere. 1980’s bands, including the Boomtown Rats begin the weekend, with heartthrob Jason Donovan appearing on Saturday. Sunday will see current names in pop as Union J and Loveable Rogues take to the stage. .

A Night Out in the West End, Ware Drill Hall, Ware, July 11-12.

A whistle-stop tour of the fascinating and diverse music of the West End. Directed by Sarah Budd and performed by the award-winning Ware Operatic Society, the show will feature songs from all your favourite musicals. Expect to hear classics from Phantom of the Opera, The Lion King, Mama Mia and more.


Farr Festival, Bygrave Woods, Newnham, July 18-20.

A boutique festival held in a secluded forest, this camping weekend seeks to delight and encapsulate. Get lost among the tipis and twinkling fairy lights and enjoy the high-spirited excitement of the enchanted woods. An eclectic mix of DJs and entertainers will provide the musical backdrop to a magical event.


Folk by the Oak, Hatfield House, Hatfield House, July 20.

Combining the finest folk musicians with a park and woodland setting, Folk by the Oak is a relaxed day out for all all ages. With craft stalls and hands-on art opportunities, it looks to offer something out of the ordinary, and also encourages festival-goers to bring their own picnics. Musical highlights include Seth Lakeman, Richard Thompson and Beth Orton.


Rhythms of the World, The Priory, Hitchin, August 2-3.

A colourful celebration of a diverse range of cultures, the much-loved Rhythms of the World is back this year. Bringing together music, arts, dance and cuisine originating from all four corners of the earth, it promises to cater to all tastes, all the while encouraging a strong sense of community values.


Rock at the Castle, Hertford Castle, Hertford, August 3.

Marking the official start of the three-week Hertford Music Festival, Rock at the Castle will be setting things off with a bang. Activities, including a bouncy castle and giant jousting equipment, will keep children entertained (alright, adults too!), and there will be a licensed bar to keep glasses full. Line up is yet to be released.


Musical Mystery Tour, Various, Hertford, August 24.

Taking you from lunchtime right through to bedtime, this tour journeys through a multitude of musical genres performed in some of Hertford’s best pubs and clubs. From rock and reggae to jazz and classical, this bank holiday symphony of sounds brings together the best local live acts for one day only, both indoors and out.



The Tringe, Various, Tring, June 29 – July 19.

With 21 performances jam-packed intro three weeks by the best acts comedy has to offer, Tringe offers Phil Jupitus and Shappi Khorsandi among those performing. The action kicks off with the notorious Roving Comedy Night, which will see more than 20 comedians move between four pubs in one night of pandemonium and laughter.


Berkofest, Berkhamsted Cricket Club, Berkhamsted, September 13.

A spree of music and comedy organised entirely by volunteers to fund musical scholarships and workshops for local children. Set in eight acres of land, visitors can indulge in a visit to the vintage tea tent, shop at the food fayre or be dazzled by the circus entertainment. Full line-up of acts yet to be announced.



Art in Clay, Hatfield House, Hatfield July 4-6.

One for pottery and ceramic enthusiasts, this event showcases some of the finest pieces being crafted by individual makers throughout Europe. Over 190 exhibitors will feature, with a number of talks and demonstrations taking place throughout the day. Those wishing to get hands-on can indulge in the make and take area.


Childwickbury Arts Fair, Childwickbury Estate, St Albans, July 4-6.

An array of more than 60 artists demonstrating their skills at the regal Childwickbury Estate. With live music, fresh food and education presented side-by-side, visitors can experience a relaxed and enjoyable approach to craft, which provides the opportunity to approach the artists and discover more about their work.


Royston Arts Festival, Various, Royston, September 19-28. From plays to author talks, Royston Arts Festival has it all. Seeking to explore all aspects of local performance, highlights include a 17-piece jazz band concert and a quirky dramatized lecture. And with a dedicated children’s area offering workshops and theatre among other things, there’s something for all the family on offer.



St Albans Cathedral Flower Festival, St Albans Cathedral, St Albans, September 25-28.

Returning after 12 years’ absence, this festival promises to appeal to all of the senses with its Music in Bloom theme. With up to 10,000 flowers on display and 132 well known pieces of music and songs being used, displays will be brought to life. Main events include a Gala Preview Party and Jazz Picnic.


An Afternoon with Ann Widdecombe Bishop’s Stortford Rugby Club, Bishop’s Stortford, July 3.

This special event will see the former Conservative Party politician, novelist and Strictly sensation visit Bishop’s Stortford to discuss her life and career. A glass of wine will be served on arrival with an afternoon tea to follow. Funds raised will go to children’s charity Action Medical Research.


Royston Kite Festival, Therfield Heath, Royston, August 3.

A fun-filled day for all the family with the chance to see first-class kite flying. Performances from Team Spectrum and Royston Power Kites lead up to the main event; the flying competition. There will also be plenty of entertainment for children, with a funfair, kite making competition and tombola.

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