What’s on

Our guide to What’s on in Wiltshire (annual events).

If there is something you think should be listed please let us know by contacting us with details.


Bradford Roots Music Festival

Acoustic, electric, eclectic: Bradford on Avon’s iconic festival. Money raised goes to local charities. www.wiltshiremusic.org.uk

Drowning of Harnham Water Meadows

A chance to watch this centuries old tradition. Drowning of the Water Meadows is a great chance to explore meadows normally off limits, with a backdrop of the lovely Salisbury Cathedral. This event is repeated in early February. www.salisburywatermeadows.org.uk


Snowdrop walks at Heale House

Beautiful snowdrop walks at Heale House, Woodford, near Salisbury. www.healegarden.co.uk

Pancake races in various locations around the county

On Shrove Tuesday.



The Devizes to Westminster International Canoe race

The 125 mile DW starts in Devizes, Wiltshire and ends at Westminster Bridge in central London, opposite the Houses of Parliament. The ultra marathon always takes place over the Easter Weekend and is the longest non-stop canoe race in the world. The first race was held in 1948. www.dwrace.co.uk

Bowood Rhodedendron Walks

Bowood House Rhodedendron Walks are from late April to early June. www.bowood-house.co.uk/rhododendrons

Speed hillclimb season opens at Gurston Down

Near Salisbury. www.gurstondown.org.

St George’s Day celebrations at various locations

23 April. See George and the Dragon.

Bradford on Avon duck race at Westbury Garden

Sponsor a duck and watch it race.

Bluebells in West Woods

Over two Sundays the woods are open to vehicles to raise money for charity. The dates for Bluebells in West Woods are usually late April into early May


May Day at Ansty

May Day at Ansty is always held on 1 May. Procession of children and the White Horse Morris Men to the Maypole for the crowning of the May Queen followed by Morris dancing.

Wyle Valley Art Trail

The Wye Valley Art Trail is a biennial, award winning festival of visual art and craft in South West Wiltshire. www.wvat.co.uk

Bradford on Avon Green Man Festival

In the picturesque riverside town of Bradford on Avon. A family friendly community festival of traditional dance, music, song and folklore led by 10′ giant Jack in the Green. Over 50 dance group, markets, kids funfair, two all day concerts and it’s all free. More info at boagreenmanfest.org/welcome/

Swindon Festival of Literature

Celebrates the written and spoken word. Includes competitions and workshops as well as a wide range of speakers. www.swindonfestivalofliterature.co.uk

Urchfont Scarecrow Festival

Bank holiday weekend. 45–50 scarecrows are made by families, groups and individuals in the village and visitors can follow the scarecrow trail. Started in 1997 as a small scale event to raise money for the refurbishment of the village hall, it is now a major local event and attracting thousands of visitors. The Scarecrow Festival was  the very first in Wiltshire.

Bluebell walks at Stourhead

Bowood Estate (Chippenham), Oakfrith Wood (Devizes), West Woods (Marlborough) and Grovely Woods (Salisbury)

Salisbury International Arts Festival

Salisbury International Arts Festival is on in May and June. www.salisburyfestival.co.uk

Rhododendron walks at Stourhead

See the stunning flowers in the grounds of this National Trust property

Oak Apple Day, Great Wishford

Villagers re-assert their right to collect firewood in Grovely Woods. Procession and maypole dancing. Oak Apple Day in Great Wishford is 29 May.

Chippenham Folk Festival

Folk music, Morris dancers, children’s festival, workshops. www.chippfolk.co.uk


Chalke History Festival

Chalke History Festival is held in the village of Bowerchalke. Talks and debates on everything from Ancient Rome to The English at Home. June to July. www.chalkefestival.com

Rainscombe Country Show

1 and 2 of June 2024. Set within the stunning Vale of Pewsey the show promotes rural and country life. The Rainscombe Country Show encourages local businesses and craft to exhibit and show off the best of what Wiltshire and the surrounding counties have to offer. A great day out for all the family with everything from vintage tractors to arena displays and rural craft. Rainscombe House and Park is situated in a natural bowl below the Downs to the north of the village of Oare.

Clarendon Way Walk

The biggest annual event for Naomi House children’s hospice. The 26 miles walk starts between 8am and 9am at Winchester Cathedral. It follows the beautiful route of the historic Clarendon Way, finishing at Salisbury Cathedral. The walk encompasses a diverse range of terrain and will take about 9 hours so make sure that you’re physically prepared for the challenge. www.naomihouse.org.uk

Flower Festival

Salisbury Cathedral. 01722 320333. www.salisburycathedral.co.uk

Summer Solstice

The Summer Solstice at Stonehenge is free to enter. thousands gather to welcome the dawn on the longest day of the year.

Armed Forces Day

Various events throughout the county. In 2019, Salisbury hosted the national event.

Farley Music Festival

All Saints Church in Farley. www.farleymusic.co.uk

Iford Arts Music Festival

Music in the beautiful Grade 1 listed gardens of Iford Manor. www.ifordarts.org.uk

Cactus & Succulent Show by the British Cactus & Succulent Society (Wiltshire branch) at the Melksham Assemble Hall

Melksham. See some fabulous Cacti and Succulents. There will also be a chance to purchase some from the members plant stall. Expert advice on hand. Refreshments & Tombola. Melksham Assembly Hall, Melksham, Wiltshire SN12 6ES.


Swindon Film Festival

Various locations around Swindon. Fascinating films and film related events led by Swindon Film Society. www.swindonfilmfestival.co.uk

Open Gardens for NGS

Various private gardens in the county will be open.

Sherston Boules Festival

UK’s largest one-day Boules tournament. Teams from far and wide come together to compete. The village’s wide high street is closed to traffic to make room for the 16 Boules pitches (or ‘pistes’) on which the 100+ games are contested throughout the day. Wide selection of stalls, cafés and bars providing plenty of refreshments. sherstonboules.org

Marlborough International Jazz Festival

A music extravaganza over one weekend each July. Music includes Jazz, Blues, African Rhythms, Fusion, Swing, Latin, Bebop and everything in between. Venues are all within easy walking distance of each other. www.marlboroughjazz.com

Rundle Cup Day

Polo matches, including the Army vs Navy for the Rundle cup. Held in Tidworth.

Festival of Archaeology

The Festival of Archaeology is held at various locations including Salisbury Museum.


Held at Charlton Park, Malmesbury, WOMAD is a world music festival.


Malmesbury Carnival & Festival



Classic routemaster buses will be the only way to get to the village of Imber. Buses leave from outside Warminster rail station. Imber Village is now owned Ministry of Defence and access only allowed a few days a year as it’s still an active training ground for the army. imberbus.org

Salisbury Summer Fair in Aid of Salisbury Hospice Charity

On the Wilton House Estate. A celebration of country ways, rural lifestyles and country sports. Attractions include Dressage Camels, Dog Agility, Birds of Prey and Steam and Vintage Vehicles. Try your skills at archery or enter your four-legged friend into the dog show. Buy good quality crafts, delicious foods and beautiful fashion and home accessories. Bar and live music.

Wiltshire Game & County Fair

Bowood Estate


Bradford on Avon Walking Festival

Held on the first weekend in September. Good range of walk lengths. walkbradfordonavon.org/bradford-on-avon-walking-festival

Marlborough Literature Festival

A range of literary events for all ages including fiction, non-fiction, poetry and the annual Big Town Read. The festival aims to champion new, upcoming writers as well as established names and also encourage a love of reading in children and young people with author talks, competitions and LitFest’s community outreach programme. www.marlboroughlitfest.org

Longleat Sky Safari

The skies above Wiltshire are filled with dozens of spectacular hot air balloons for Longleat Sky Safari. There are also night glows. Weather dependent.

Final speed hillclimb meeting at Gurston Down


Berwick St John Country Fayre

Berwick St John Country Fayre is a biennial fayre started in 1992. Steam engines, vintage tractors, lorries, cars, and bikes, military vehicle display, fair ground rides, produce,tea tent and trade stands. Free entry but donations to the nominated charity are appreciated. www.berwickstjohncountryfayre.co.uk

Swindon Railway Festival



Mere Literary Festival

Second Monday of October. Literary festival to support the Linkscheme charity. Local and international writers and performers put on a variety of talks, workshops and shows. mereliteraryfestival.com

Salisbury Charter Fair

Held on the third Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday in Salisbury Market Square.

Calne Music and Arts Festival



Flaxlands Charity Christmas Craft Fayre

At Flaxlands Manor Farm Royal Wootton Bassett SN15 5BB. All proceeds to Alzheimer’s Support Wiltshire. Amazing homemade food and wonderful handcrafted gifts. Activities for the children and plenty of free parking.

Salisbury Christmas Market

Christmas market held in the centre of Salisbury.

Firework displays throughout the county

Various displays throughout the county.

Salisbury Lantern Procession

Hundreds of lanterns paraded through Salisbury city centre.

Devizes Christmas Festival

All day long Christmas markets in the Market Place and Corn Exchange, live music, street theatre  and parade of lanterns. The parade circles the town and returns to the Market Place in time for Father Christmas to switch on the Christmas Lights and start the firework display.

Darkness to Light Advent Procession

The Darkness to Light Advent Procession is a beautiful candlelit event at Salisbury Cathedral.

Bowood House Christmas Extravaganza

Raises funds for the Wiltshire Bobby Van Trust.  Shoppers will have the chance to seek out upscale items from a wealth of gift stalls spreading out from the House Restaurant, through to the Sculpture Gallery and on into the Orangery.

The Festival of Light at Longleat

The Festival of Light at Longleat is a stunning display of silk lanterns on a theme.


Christmas light switch-on events around the county

Winter solstice at Stonehenge

Watch the sunrise on the shortest day of the year at the Winter Solstice at Stonehenge.