Here it is my 40 best summer events across the East Midlands to keep you busy all summer. This list includes events in Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire and Derbyshire. All events are family friendly. Enjoy and report back by following us on social media. We’d love to hear what you have or haven’t enjoyed – 40 Best Summer Events East Midlands 2019 | Family Friendly | Things to Do
Belton House – Family House tour – Lincolnshire
When? Various dates in July and August.
“Discover the untold stories of Belton House with our interactive tour. It’s been specially designed for families with children aged 5 years and over in mind. There’s limited tickets available, so pre-booking is essential.”
My review of Belton House – Belton House, great day out for kids
Belvoir Castle – Firework Champions – Leicestershire
When? August 10th
“Now in its 6th year, at Belvoir Castle – 4 great firework displays! Three of the UK’s best firework companies compete against each other with a 10 minute firework display choreographed to music followed by a finale display from organisers MLE Pyrotechnics. The event is the only one of its type in the UK where the audience have the capability to vote for the team they liked the most using their mobile phone. Texts will be charged at normal rates and a limit of 1 vote per number is in place. Each voting number receives a text back with the results.”
My review of Belvoir Castle – Belvoir castle Leicestershire, day out review.
Bolsover Castle – Summer Events – Derbyshire
When? Sat 20 Jul – Sun 1 Sep 2019
Get hands on with history – “Polish your armour and dust off your tiara – it’s time to learn the tools of the trade as you become a knight or princess for the day. You’re cordially invited to Bolsover Castle where our courtly experts will teach you skills in heroic chivalry and eloquent etiquette. You’d be a jabbering jester to miss it!”
Plus summer nights film festival – 26th – 28th July and a Legendary joust – 25th & 26th August.
Why not check out my review of Bolsover castle – Bolsover Castle – Our Favourite English Heritage Property in Derbyshire.
Bosworth Medieval Festival – Bosworth Battlefield – Leicestershire
When? Saturday 17th August – Sunday 18th August.
“The family-friendly festival is one of the highlights of the summer calendar and features the re-enactment of two battles from the Wars of the Roses, with the Battle of Bosworth as the grand finale. As well as the battle re-enactments, there are large living history encampments to explore, jousting, cannon fire demonstrations, guided tours, author talks, a medieval craft market and an array of hands-on games and competitions for children, as well as entry to the award-winning exhibition and free car parking.”
Find out more about the event in my review – Bosworth Medieval Festival – At Bosworth Battlefield Heritage Centre, Leicestershire.
Burghley House – Beastly Boring Burghley Tour – Lincolnshire
When? Monday 5th – 17th August
“Join us daily at 10am (excluding Fridays and Sundays) for a guided tour with a difference during the Summer holidays! Be guided around by our costumed guides and find out all the grizzly gruesome and horrible history associated with Burghley and the people who have lived here. Your ticket will then give you access to the House and Gardens for the rest of the day.”
Other events include a summer craft workshop, Burghley Film Festival, Battle Proms concert and more. Please click the link above for further information.
To find out more about Burghley house please read my review – Burghley House – Garden of Surprises – Family Day Out Review.
Chapter House Open Air Theatre – Various Locations across the East Midlands
“Chapterhouse Theatre Company will be touring six wonderful new open-air theatre productions across the UK and Ireland through from June until September 2019. In a season full of romance, suspense and enchantment, Chapterhouse is performing some of the best-loved stories from throughout the centuries. Performances include The Secret Garden, Treasure Island and a Midsummer Night’s dream.”
Chatsworth House – Summer at Chatsworth – Derbyshire
When? 23rd July – 29th August
“Join us this summer for a fun-filled day out. From meeting the farmyard animals up close, a guided tour of the house and live music in the garden, there’s something everyone this summer at Chatsworth.”
Conkers – 7 weeks of summer adventures – Leicestershire
When? Throughtout the summer holidays.
“A full day of entertainment for all in pursuit of adventure! It’s Showtime! Our Shows Include…
- Ras King Bobo – Be prepared to be in awe of the shapes and skills of Ras King Bobo, as he brings the whole audience together performing stage dance & trained skills right up close for everyone to see (parents are usually the most shocked as he contorts his body to a yoga level we can only dream of!)
- Punch & Judy – A story retold a million times and to be retold a million more. Can the police officer help Punch & Judy, or will the crocodile take his chance to get hold of some sausages whilst our main characters are not looking!
- Musical Mascots Assemble – Performances for all to get involved, playing the favourites such as “Baby Shark” & also LOL Diva. With high fives all round to involve the whole audience in some crazy moves to follow along.
- Fudge & Co – presenting animals you may never have seen before and dependent on group sizes, you may be able to get up close and see for yourselves
If you’d like to find out more about Conkers please read my review – Conkers National Forest Family Friendly Day Out | Things To Do.
Deerstock Festival – Nottinghamshire
When? July 26-28th
“Deerstock is an amazing family friendly festival with a fantastic vibe! There’s always a great variety of bands, quality food stalls, loads of kids activities and plenty of space for camping onsite in a beautiful setting! With 3 stages, a craft tent, children’s activities, workshops, a well-stocked bar, a cheese and cider tent and an excellent selection of food stalls we are sure there is something for everyone.”
Easton Walled Gardens – Picnic days – Lincolnshire
When? Sunday 4th August & Wednesday 14th August
Picnic day on the 4th – “It’s exactly what it says on the tin! A day to bring a picnic along with all your family and friends and celebrate the great outdoors, nature, space, meadows, plants and wildlife. It’s the simple things in life that matter and we want to share those things with you. If you don’t fancy making up your own picnic, the tearoom will be open selling delicious light lunches, homemade cakes and cream teas. All you’ll need is a blanket!.”
Teddy Bear’s Picnic on the 14th – “There’ll be storytelling and games on the main lawn so families are welcome to bring a picnic and their favourite teddy bears and while away the hours listening to tales of wonder and surprise. Storytelling is included with the usual garden entry fee. The gardens will be open from 11am-4pm and storytelling will take place at various times throughout the day. If the weather is inclement, storytelling will relocate to the barn!”
Gloworm Festival – Thoresby Park – Nottinghamshire
When? 17th & 18th August
“The Gloworm Festival is a brilliant 2 day Festival that has been especially created for grown ups and their little people. We invite our festival goers to come and play in a warm, welcoming and creative environment, loose their inhibitions, let their hair down and have some fun. Here at the Gloworm Festival, we believe that Children are the most important people in the world, which is why this event is aimed at families with Children aged 0-13, with plenty for teenagers and grown ups to enjoy too.”
Great Central Railway – Dino Days event and more – Leicestershire
Dino Days 13th, 14th, and 15th August. “Tiny the huge Triceratops is simply jaw-dropping! At 5.5 metres long, he has an awesome presence and is adored by all ages. He loves playing follow-my-leader with a trail of tiny tots stomping along behind him! He also craves cuddles from any daring Grannysaurus! The Dino Babies are simply awesome and adorable! Everyone wants to stroke and photograph them! We have several in the family and each has a quirky character of its own! Come and meet them!
The Jurassic Jungle. Come on an adventure through our very own Jurassic Jungle where you can dress up as a Dinosaur Explorer and search for dinosaurs and fossils out in the wilds. Who knows what exciting things you might find!”
Plus Master builder Lego 6th – 8th August. Back to school family event Sat 24th to Mon 26th August and Diesel Gala 6th, 7th and 8th August.
Heckington show – Lincolnshire
When? Saturday 27th & Sunday 28th July
“Held on the last full weekend in July, nothing quite matches Heckington Show for the relaxed way that it combines the intimacy of a village show with the expectation of the national stage. Heckington Show is a true family day out, a quintessentially English Summer occasion for families and friends to enjoy and take part in an event that brings competition and co-operation, pride and pleasure, sunshine and smiles to a Summer’s day. Run by volunteers for you to enjoy.”
Lincoln Castle – Various Events – Lincolnshire
When? Saturday 27 – Sunday 28 July
Victorian Extravaganza – “Join us as we celebrate the spectacular, the inventive and the extraordinary at Lincoln Castle’s Victorian Extravaganza! Be amazed by Mr Alexander and his Travelling Show, bringing a variety of balance, juggling and illusion. Take time to visit the Quack Doctor who promises to sell you a cure for all your ailments! With fairground attractions, band and much more, there is something for everyone to enjoy in this Victorian extravaganza.”
When? Saturday 3 – Sunday 4 August
Grand Medieval Joust – “Feel the thunder of hooves and hear the clash of lance on steel armour as our brave Knights take part in the Sport of Kings. Meet the knights and choose your champion and cheer him on. Together with musicians, surgeon, jester and a cast of medieval characters this weekend brings together some of the best jousters in the country with a full supporting programme of medieval activity throughout the Castle grounds.”
Plus Outdoor theatre Alice in Wonderland, Victorian Circus, Steampunk festival and much more. Please see their website for further details.
We have reviewed the Grand Medieval joust if you’d like to find out more – Lincoln Castle – Grand Medieval Joust – Event Review. Plus Lincoln castle itself – 6 Great Reasons to Visit Lincoln Castle | Review.
Lincoln Aviation – East Kirkby Air Show – Lincolnshire
When? 3rd August
“This is our annual full airshow and is run to help raise funds for the on-going restoration of Avro Lancaster NX611. We have limited tickets to 5,000 so it is vital that you try and buy your tickets early as we sold out last year. We are happy to say that we have been able to secure some of the best displays in the country so the audience should not be disappointed! It is imperative that all those who are planning coming to the event do buy their tickets before hand so that they can gain entry to the site. We will have re-enactors, Lancaster taxy runs, trade stalls, vintage cars, Military vehicles and much more to give you an excellent family day out.”
When? 26th August
They also have their Props and Pistons event on the 26th August “This extremely popular event held with Bush Tyres, Michellin and ZR Tyres lincoln in aid of Leukemia and Lymphoma Research bring a huge variety of exotic and vintage cars to the Centre along with some major UK Warbirds.
Find out more about the place in my review – Lincolnshire Aviation heritage centre – Day out UK kids.
Lincolnshire Widlife Park – Day of the Tiger – Lincolnshire
When? Sunday 28th July
“An annual fund raising event for Tigers of the world. Did you know that there are more Tigers living in private residence such as back gardens, in America, than there are living in their natural habitats worldwide! Learn, help and have fun doing it at our International Day of the Tiger event this year, with live theatre productions, Children’s activities & entertainment, Market, competitions and quizzes.”
To find out more about the park please check out my review – Lincolnshire Wildlife Park | Family Day Out Review.
Lincolnshire Wolds Railway – Teddy Bear Day – Lincolnshire
When? Sunday 11th August
“Teddy Bears Day – Free travel for children who bring their favourite cuddly toy. Entertainment on the train – join in the dancing at North Thoresby! Trains hourly 10.45am – 3.45pm.” For other special event days please see their website for further information.
We had a lovely day out here – please read all about it here – A Ride on a Steam Train in Ludborough, Lincolnshire Wolds Railway.
Mablethorpe Illuminations – Lincolnshire
When? 27th July
“Join us for Mablethorpe’s annual illuminations event on Central Beach on 27th July from 6.30pm until 10.30pm. An exciting line-up of music and entertainment has been planned for all the family to enjoy. So get your beach dancing shoes ready for an evening of fantastic music and fireworks.”
For more ideas of things to do in Mablethorpe please see – 16 Things To Do In Mablethorpe – Lincolnshire Seaside – Family Friendly.
Market Rasen Racecourse – Family Fun Day – Lincolnshire
When? 4th August
“Join us for a fabulous afternoon filled with fun for all the family at our Family Extravaganza. With fantastic races and kid’s carnival with bags of FREE entertainment for children of all ages. PLUS see Duggee from Hey Duggee at intervals throughout the day! FREE Children’s Entertainment.”
We reviewed one of their family fun days – Family fun at the races – Market Rasen day out review.
Midland Railway Butterley – Trains to the Seaside – Derbyshire
When? 30th July until 1st September 2019, every day except for Monday 5th, 12th & 19th August.
“Come to Butterley Station in Derbyshire, from where you will be transported by steam or heritage diesel train to the newly created beach at Swanwick Junction. When you have built and destroyed your sand castles; sunned yourself on your beach towel; devoured your beach picnic and had your picture taken with your head popping through an amusing portrait, take some time out to visit the various museums, demonstration signal box, country park, buffet and children’s’ playground at Swanwick Junction before returning by train to Butterley Station.”
Normanby Hall – Party in the Park – Lincolnshire
When? July 19th & 20th
“Normanby Hall Country Park have announced details of a new summer music festival with an exciting line-up of international and local acts. The event will take place on 19 and 20 July 2019, with multi-million selling band Toploader topping the bill on Saturday 20 July.”
Plus other events please see their website for further information.
Why not check out my review for Normanby Hall? – Normanby Hall Country Park | Day out Review.
Nottingham Beach – Nottingham
When? Saturday 13th July – Sunday 2nd September.
“There will be a number of children’s and family fun ride attractions at the Nottingham Beach Bar located in Old Market Square. The year’s entertainment schedule will be bigger and better than ever before. With lots of fun things to do this summer, Movie nights are back! JustBen hosting ‘variety on the beach’ plus much more! There will be a variety of LIVE performances from local bands and artists throughout the Nottingham Beach Event.”
Nottinghams Riverside Festival
When? Friday 2 – Sunday 4 August 2019.
“The East Midlands’ biggest free festival returns to the banks of the Trent, celebrating summer as this hugely popular mid-summer festival returns. With the usual blend of live music, river-based activities, kids’ zone, massive funfair. There is also the Riverside highlight – the Saturday night fireworks.”
Pink Pig Farm – Summer at the Farm – Lincolnshire
When? 20th July – 3rd September
“Beach and water play – Water pistol wars, bubble party (4pm), Sand sculpture and sandcastle building competitions. build paper boats and sail them plus much more.”
Please check out my review of Pink Pig Farm – Normanby Hall Country Park | Day out Review.
Rand Farm Park – Various Events – Lincolnshire
Mythical Creatures – 20th July – 4th August
Summer of fun – 5th – 23rd August
Jurassic Farm Park – 24th August – 3rd September
What’s on. Please follow link.
Robin Hood Festival – Sherwood Forest – Nottinghamshire
When? August 5-11.
“Visitors are invited to come along, dress-up if you want, and enjoy seven days of live re-enactments, song, dance, storytelling, sword-fighting, archery and adventures with the outlaws. You might even meet the legend himself. You’ll find food and drink stalls, craft stands, demonstrations, medieval music, have-a-go archery and plenty of activities that will immerse you in the legends of Sherwood. A great way to make the most of the summer holidays, the Robin Hood Festival has been loved by families and Robin fans since 1984. There’s no need to book and entry is free – there’s just a £6 parking fee for a full day.”
Rockingham Castle – Vikings of Middle England – Leicestershire
When? Sunday 25th August
“The Vikings return to us again! Be prepared for battles, pageantry, Living History camp and much more. The Vikings! of Middle England are most famous for their realistic, exciting and entertaining battle displays. The thunderous clash of steel rings out as opposing forces meet. See life of the Olden Times in the tented encampment where tradesmen display their skills, making weapons, coins, weaving nets and brewing medicines. Have-a-go archery and storytellers wow the crowds.”
RSPB Frampton Marsh – Summer Knights Treasure Trail – Lincolnshire
When? Saturday 20 July to Tuesday 3 September
“Meet the knights who guard Frampton Marsh against evil monsters. Follow the trail and complete their quests. If you succeed you will win the keys to their treasure chest, and the prizes within!. Please allow an hour to complete. Sorry, no dogs. Reserve entry fees apply. No need to book.”
For full list of events please follow this link.
Rufford Abbey – Superhero Trail – Nottinghamshire
When? 20th July – 1st September
£2 per trail sheet “Have you ever thought it would be super cool to have a special power? Flying, invisibility, incredible strength, mind reading, super speed…. Or all of them! Well we have something special for you. Come and train to be the ultimate superhero at our Superhero School this summer. You will follow our training trail where you will be able to win points, defeat the baddies to earn your very own super powers! Come dressed for the part, masked and capes are a must!! Suitable for ages 4 – 11.”
Rufford Abbey also has outdoor cinema events this summer. Please see their events page for further information.
Want to find out more about what there is to see and do at Rufford Abbey? Please see – Rufford Abbey Country Park | Things To Do | Free Day Out
Skegness Carnival – Lincolnshire
When? 11th – 14th August
“The Skegness Carnival Parade 2019 will take place on Sunday 11th August. Celebrating the 50 year anniversary of man landing on the moon, this years carnival theme is Space! We will also be holding the Pet Show and Dog show on Sunday, the carnival parade days this year. Giving more people an opportunity to take part and enter the competition. On Wednesday 14th August will be the traditional 999 day also including the very popular baby show.”
Skegness Raceway – Various Events – Lincolnshire
When? Various dates throughout the summer holidays
They have plenty of summer events at Skegness raceway. Such as a summer special days with Double Decker Bangers, stunt teams and more. Carnival day with Slingshot Monster Truck Car Crushing, Services Racing, Banger & Caravan Destruction Derby with Static Caravans
1300 Saloon Gold Roof Championship, Rookie Bangers (non Honda mv), Mascars. Please see their website for further information.
Splendour Festival 2019 – Wollaton Park – Nottinghamshire
When? Saturday 20th July
“Headliners Manic Street Preachers and The Specials, as well as Rag’n’Bone Man, All Saints and a whole host of artists, comedians and entertainers, will perform at Nottinghamshire’s biggest outdoor music event at Wollaton Park. Also performing will be Northern Irish rock band Ash, Fine Young Cannibals’ singer Roland Gift, indie rockers The Rifles as well as X Factor winner Louisa and Mancunian alt-rock band The Slow Readers Club.
With lots happening all over the park aside from the three music stages, including comedy in the courtyard, a fun fair, a kids’ area and entertainers out and about in the crowd, the festival is Nottingham’s biggest party of the summer and a fantastic day out for all the family.”
Sudbury Hall – Out of this world – Derbyshire
When? From 20th July
Out of this world summer trail – “Seek out Sudbury’s space enemy in a fun trail around the grounds! This is a free event but donations to the National Trust are welcome.” Plus Out of this world crafts, yoga and more.
Superhero Picnic in the Park – Derbyshire
When? Tue 30 Jul – Thu 1 Aug, 11am – 3pm
“Free events to celebrate Love Parks Week 2019 in Derby. Dress as your favourite Superhero to be in with winning a prize. Attractions will vary at each park but will include sports and craft activities, emergency services, gym try out sessions, golf try it sessions, and face painting. All you need to do to take part in the fun is dress up like a superhero, bring a picnic, and enjoy the activities. Prizes will be given to the best dressed superhero. Tue 30 Jul at Markeaton Park, Wed 31 Jul at Chaddesden Park and Thu 1 Aug at Darley Park.”
Tattershall Castle – Various Summer Events – Lincolnshire
When? 22 July – 28th July
Story Week – A Dragon’s quest – “Nothing is more exciting for little ones than taking part in a dragon themed craft before following a fun family story booklet which takes them on an adventure around the castle (please note there are additional charges for the craft and trail).”
Plus other events such as Play Day and Teddy Bear’s Picnic. Please see their website for further information.
The Village Church Farm – Knights of Skirbeck Medieval Weekend – Lincolnshire
When? August 24th, 25th & 26th.
“The Knights, ladies and camp followers, will be setting up camp on the green at the Village Church Farm over the bank holiday weekend. Come and see what life was like in Medieval England. There will be cooking, crafts and fighting all weekend, plus much more.”
Twinlakes – Summer Events – Leicestershire
The greatest circus – 3rd-8th August and 11th – 27th August. “Ladies & gents this is the moment you have been waiting for… THE GREATEST CIRCUS Be prepared to be dazzled and delighted during The Greatest Circus show during this summer. The circus is FREE to all day ticket and annual pass holders. No pre-booking required. Seats to the circus are on a first come first served queue basis. The circus is FREE to all day ticket and annual pass holders. No pre-booking required.”
Plus Titan the robot 31st August, Peter Rabbit cinema 10th August, Greatest showman cinema August 9th. Plus Music festival 1st & 2nd August.
Why not read my review of Twin Lakes to find out more about what’s there – Twinlakes – Family Theme Park – Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire.
Uncle Henry’s Maize Maze – Lincolnshire
When? 21st July until the 2nd September
“Uncle Henry’s Maize Maze entry is priced at £6 per person, a Family Ticket for 4 is £20 or a Season Ticket is £30 per person. These can be purchased from the shop tills at Uncle Henry’s from Saturday 21st July. Please note that the Tractor and Trailer Rides and Pumpkin Picking are an extra charge. The Maize Maze is open from 10am and last entry is at 4pm Monday to Saturday and 3pm on Sundays.”
My review of Uncle Henry’s Maize Maze – Uncle Henry’s Maize Maze Challenge – Day out near Lincoln.
Wheelgate Park – Summer Events – Nottinghamshire
July 20th Transformers cars “This summer come and see the Transformer Cars at Wheelgate Family Theme Park Over the two days you can get the chance to see and sit in the actual cars from the Transformer Films, these include: Bumblebee 2017 – Camaro Barricade 2007 – Saleen Police Car Beaterbee 1977 – Camaro The owners will be on hand to give out information on the cars and also remember to bring your camera for the very special photo.”
Titan the robot – August 30th. The greatest circus August 1st – 11th (see Twin lakes above).
Find out more about Wheelgate in my review – Robin Hoods Wheelgate Park – Nottinghamshire – Day Out Review.
White Post Farm – The Greatest White Post Show – Nottinghamshire
When? 2nd – 4th Augusut
“Get ready for a day to remember, complete with onsite performers, singalongs and workshops. All included in admission, plus for £1 you can add a ticket to go watch the National Festival Circus!! At this point booking is essential, so make sure you book online to secure your place.”
My review of White Post Farm – What Can You Do at White Post Farm, Nottinghamshire, on a Rainy Day?.
40 Best Summer Events East Midlands 2018 | Family Friendly | Things to Do
Please note all listings may be subject to change. Please check opening times and if the event is still running before leaving home.
For more ideas for days out across the East Midlands please visit my days out page – plus 200+ great family friendly things to do in Lincolnshire.
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