Things to do in Essex this June
- Credit: Blackwater Country Show
With June comes summer fun, and here's the Essex Life's guide of what to do in the county this month...
1. Carters Steam Fair, Maldon
Experience the joys of a bygone era with the whole family as Carters Steam Fair returns to Maldon Promenade Park for the Platinum Jubilee weekend. Expect steam engines, rides, twinkling lights, sumptuous colours, vintage music, the sound of the fairground organ and the aroma of doughnuts, candy floss and coal. Entry to the fair is free, but all rides and stalls require tickets, which can be purchased online in advance to receive special deals and extra free rides.
Date: May 28-June 5
Time: From 11am to late
Cost: From £30 for 10 tokens and two free rides
Address: Promenade Park, Park Drive CM9 5JQ
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2. Thaxted Festival, Thaxted
Taking place over four weekends, visitors can expect a range of musical events, from full orchestral to chamber ensembles, soloists, choral, jazz piano and vocal music, guitar, swing and a staged Gilbert and Sullivan comic opera.
Date: June 17-July 10
Time & Cost: Events individually ticketed and programmed
Address: 7 Town Street Thaxted CM6 2LD
3. Colchester Medieval Fayre
Held in Lower Castle Park, this event was described by the Sunday Times as ‘A tour de force in medievalism that’s the biggest of its type in Europe.’ This wonderful fayre and market boasts stalls selling all sorts of interesting historic crafts alongside Medieval-style performers. Children will be delighted by the storytellers and live music. Adult tickets £10 per day, children £4 per day. Discounted family and weekend passes available.
Date: June 4-5
Cost: From £10/£4 adult/child, weekend and family passes available
Address: Lower Castle Park, St Peters Street entrance (Ryegate) Colchester, C01 1HL
4. Father’s Day: Bushcraft Workshop
Learn how to light a fire without matches, forage a wild tea, safely carve a butter knife and get an introduction to the season’s edible and medicinal plants. You'll develop new skills with the family and get your own handmade craft to keep. Booking essential.
Date: June 19
Address: Markshall Estate, Coggeshall, CO6 1TG
5. EA Festival at Hedingham Castle
After receiving rave reviews from its inaugural event in 2021, EA Festival 2022 returns to Hedingham Castle this summer with a star-studded line-up, including Maggi Hambling, Paul McKenna, Anne Glenconner and Bessie Turner. There will be 22 speakers and performers in total across two days, discussing wide-ranging topics from psychedelic drugs to political history. Each day will be finished with an enthralling musical concert. Art-lovers will also enjoy the extensive exhibition of modern and traditional art from Cambridge Art Fair.
Date: June 11-12
Cost: From £12
Address: Hedingham Castle, Castle Hedingham, Halstead CO9 3DJ
6. Hayletts Gallery art exhibition, Fingringhoe
Hayletts Gallery is holding its first live exhibition in two years. Held in a beautiful converted Essex barn near Colchester, it will showcase the most-famous names in British art, from David Hockney and Tracey Emin to Henry Moore and Anthony Gormley.
Date: June 25-July 2
Address: Geedon Gallery, Jaggers, Fingringhoe, CO5 7DN
7. Go Your Own Way, Fleetwood Mac tribute night, Colchester
Go Your Own Way is a brilliant new show featuring the music of the legendary Fleetwood Mac. The band’s rock ‘n’ roll legacy is performed by a talented and acclaimed ensemble of musicians, who will take the audience on a journey through their incredible song book. Paying tribute to the Rumours-era line-up of Stevie, Mick, John, Christine and Lindsey, the show will feature classics such as Dreams, Don’t Stop, Everywhere, Rhiannon, Little Lies and much more.
Date: June 18
Address: Charter Hall, Colchester Leisure World, Cowdray Avenue CO1 1YH
8. Brentwood District Arts Society lecture, Ingatestone
One of its regular art lectures, the Brentwood District Arts Society is hosting ‘Women behind the lens: Outstanding female photographers and their contribution to the art of photography.’ Coffee and tea are served from 7.30pm and lectures start at 8pm.
Date: June 15
Address: Ingatestone Community Hall, 7 High Street, Ingatestone CM4 9ED
9. Blackwater Country Show
The Blackwater Country Show has established itself as a must-visit event for Essex families. Situated in a picturesque setting in Chigborough Road, Heybridge, the show promotes the countryside and outdoor pursuits. Admire the heavy horses, meet farm animals, watch birds of prey, see the Newfoundland dog rescue, and you can also try clay shooting, fly fishing or kayaking. Bring a picnic or sample the local produce available from the stands.
Date: June 19
Cost: £12/£2 adult/child
Address: Chigborough Road, Heybridge, Maldon CM9 4RB
10. Leigh Folk Festival
This long-established festival has been a staple on the UK’s folk-arts scene for 30 years. Held against the backdrop of the beautiful Leigh Library Gardens and surrounding venues, the festival welcomes tens of thousands of visitors. Mainly free to attend, attendees will enjoy a broad spectrum of music, dance, spoken word, comedy and lots more. The event is organised by Leigh Folk Arts, a small community arts charity. Ticketed events can be booked through the website.
Date: June 23-26
Cost: Events individually ticketed, from free
Address: Venues across Leigh-on-Sea
11. Father’s Day: Motorfest, Chelmsford
This action-packed event is perfect for Father’s Day. There will be monster trucks having a tug of war and thrilling motorcycle displays, the amazing Wall of Death, an inflatable village and funfair and you can even take to the skies with a helicopter ride.
Date: June 18-19
Cost: From £18.50/£14 adult/child
Address: Hylands Park, Margaretting Road, Chelmsford CM1 3PJ
12. Colchester Food and Drink Festival
Relax in the wonderful atmosphere of this much-loved festival at Lower Castle Park, Colchester. Bring the family (including your dog), stroll around the stands and listen to live music while deciding which artisan-produced local goodies you’ll be enjoying in the sunshine and taking home to enjoy later. There’s also The Pikestaff Inn real ale bar, featuring a variety of ciders and good cold lager.
Date: June 25-26
Cost: £5/free adult/under-14s
Address: Lower Castle Park, St Peters Street entrance (Ryegate) C01 1HL
13. National Garden Scheme open garden, Margaretting
Winner of the Daily Mail National Garden Competition 2021, Peacocks in Margaretting has idyllic large formal gardens alongside wildlife gardens in a small country estate. Opening for the National Garden Scheme, admission is £5.
Date: June 12 & 19
Address: The Gate House Peacocks, Margaretting, Ingatestone CM4 9HY
14. Great Dunmow Summer Solstice Sundown
With lots of great music acts performing, the second Great Dunmow Summer Solstice Sundown is set to be another great day to celebrate the longest day of the year.
Date: June 18
Address: use postcode CM6 2AD