The August bank holiday weekend is a joyous excuse to explore the array of activities that England has to offer. VisitEngland and The National Trust have selected the top ways of making the most of the long summer weekend.
Celebrate Europe’s biggest street festival, Notting Hill Carnival, London
28 – 29 August
Fresh talent, brilliant music and a beautifully decorated parade of floats, Notting Hill Carnival is a real explosion of creativity that fills the streets with intricate costumes, steel and marching bands, Calypso music and a variety of mouth-watering food. This annual event has taken place since 1966 on the streets of Notting Hill and continues to captivate visitors with its unique charm, attracting millions of people each year. Sunday August 28 is referred to as ‘Children’s Day’, then it continues into Monday August 29. The free event has a Caribbean festival theme, bringing a welcome splash of colour to West London. www.visitlondon.com/discover-london/london-areas/west/notting-hill
Camp out with The Big Wild Sleepout on Havergate Island, Suffolk
28 – 29 August
Escape to Suffolk’s only island for a relaxed end of the summer holidays and spend a day and night surrounded by amazing wildlife on this peaceful RSPB nature reserve in the River Ore. See flocks of birds, grasshoppers or crickets and with some luck spot the wild Havergate hares in their natural home. You will get exclusive admission to the remote nature reserve, a 20-minute boat trip down the river and the opportunity to participate in a programme of exciting activities. Prices are £124 for adults; £78 for 3 to 16 year olds. www.wasuffolk.co.uk/big-wild-sleep-out-on-havergate
Live cinema takes witchery back to Lancaster Castle with Harry Potter films, Lancaster
25 – 29 August
Sneaky Experience are bringing a touch of history back to life in a magical experience at Lancaster Castle, a place known for its famous trials of the Pendle witches in the 1600s. These outdoor screenings promise to entertain fans of the Harry Potter films of all ages, with the majestic backdrop of Lancaster Castle providing a fantastic setting for a magical experience. Tickets are priced from £14.50 which includes a 90-minute wizarding experience with classes, plus a film screening. For more information and to book tickets visit: www.sneakyexperience.co.uk
The cream pie fight record-breaking attempt, various Away Resorts locations
Away Resorts is looking to break a record for having the world’s biggest cream pie fight. Holidaymakers at Away Resorts’s five parks across the UK will have cream all over their faces as the operator invites its guests to throw a pie or two at family, friends and fellow guests as it attempts to break the record for the world’s largest shaving cream pie fight. There’s also each location to explore, from the lakeside retreat of Tattershall Lakes to the coastal resorts of Whitecliff Bay, Mill Rythe (Hayling Island), Mersea Island and Barmouth Bay. Three nights’ camping on a standard pitch at Tattershall Lakes costs from £175 from 26-29 August for two adults and two children; and three nights in a Comfort Caravan that sleeps six starts at £395. www.awayresorts.co.uk
Dance, eat and revitalise at the Jazz and Ale Festival at Boringdon Hall, Plymouth
The annual Jazz and Ale Festival returns to Boringdon Hall Lawn for a summer’s afternoon and evening of food, drink and festivities with live jazz music and entertainment for both adults and children. With Ales from St Austell Brewery, a PIMMS and Cider tent, hog roast and range of food stalls, it’s the perfect way to end the summer holidays. The festivities kick off from 2pm and finish at 10pm. Entry is free. www.boringdonhall.co.uk/events/jazz-and-ale-festival
Prepare to be amazed at the Deep Water Solo Climbing Competition, Exeter
26 – 29 August
An exciting sporting event for spectators, the competition taps into one of the fastest growing areas of climbing: deep water soloing. Climbers attempt to ascend routes on sea cliffs without using ropes, using the sea below as their drop off point when they can no longer climb. Staged by the Quay Climbing Centre, the event last year attracted over 40 of the UK and Europe’s top climbers together with over 160 ‘amateurs’ from across the country to compete in the two-day event. The event is free for spectators to view but you may wish to bring a soft cushion to sit on as no additional quayside seating is supplied. www.heartofdevon.com/whats-on
For more ideas visit www.visitengland.com
Cherryburn, Northumberland Bat Watch
29 August, 7pm – 9pm
Celebrate National Bat Day with a spot of bat watching at Cherryburn. National Trust rangers will be venturing around this beautiful farmyard site looking for bats. Join them for the evening to learn all about these fascinating creatures.
Price: £5, booking essential
For more information and booking, please call 01661 843 276
Dudmaston, Shropshire Awesome Art
28 – 29 August, 11am – 5.30pm
Lady Labouchere of Dudmaston was born on 31st August 1908 and this weekend the house celebrates her birthday with one of her favourite pastimes, Art. Head to Dudmaston for a bank holiday all about art. Release the inner artist in you and help to create works of art around the orchard and garden. Take the Awesome Art trail around the garden and make a poppy to plant on the lawn. Local artist Meg Hawkins will be doing demonstrations and showcasing her countryside illustrations.
Price: £2.50 (normal admission charges apply)
For more information, please call 01746 780866
Morden Hall Park, London Quacky Races
29 August, 11am – 3pm
Will your plastic duck come first in a race down the River Wandle? Join in the quacky madness and race a plastic duck down the River Wandle from the water wheel to the white bridge. Races take place throughout the day, with the last race at 3pm. You can also make a flag to cheer on the competitors. Sign up early at the Snuff Mill to avoid disappointment.
Price: £1.50 (normal admission charges apply)
For more information, please call 020 8545 6853
Souter Lighthouse and The Leas, Tyne & Wear Beach Party
27 August, 11am – 4pm
Oh, we do like to be beside the seaside! Head down to Souter beach for a day of fun in the sun. There’ll be a barbeque and ice-cream plus loads of beach games and seaside themed activities. Who can build the best sand castle!?
Price: Free event
For more information, please call 0191 5290909
For more information about other events visit www.nationaltrust.org.ukLast modified: June 10, 2021