A spectacular look into Banbury’s culture and heritage.
The town of Banbury is preparing to host the Banbury Canal Festival on the 30th of September and the 1st of October. This annual event goes beyond being just a day’s activity; it’s a heartfelt celebration that highlights Banbury’s rich heritage, its vibrant arts scene, and the close-knit community that calls it home.
Imagine walking alongside Banbury’s serene waterways, with the harmonious tunes of live music filling the air, the aromatic wafts from food and drink stalls teasing your senses, and the vivid imagery of decorated boats and bustling craft markets painting a lively scene. This is the Banbury Canal Festival in its full glory, echoing the town’s legacy and its commitment to community bonding.
Highlights Not to Miss
The Mill Arts Centre:
As you venture into Chamberlain Court car park, prepare to be mesmerised. The Mill Arts Centre is ready to set the stage on fire with its line-up of captivating, free outdoor dance performances, a testament to Banbury’s vibrant art scene.
Delve deep into Banbury’s maritime past at Tooley’s, renowned as one of the oldest operational dry docks on the Inland Waterways. A beacon of historical significance, its blacksmith’s forge and carpenter’s workshop stand as proud relics of a time when craftsmanship was paramount.
The Majestic Canal:
The waterways will be alive with activity. Canal boat craft traders showcasing their unique wares, and boat trips, bookable in advance, promise an intimate experience of the canal’s enchantment.
For All Ages: Entertainment Galore!
Children aren’t merely onlookers at the festival. With a plethora of funfair rides and diverse activities tailored for them, their delight and enthusiasm will undeniably be one of the day’s highlights.
The Sealed Knot’s Historical Reenactment:
Nestled in the Bridge Street Park, behind the Mill Arts Centre, the Sealed Knot civil war society is geared up to transport you back in time. Known as the oldest re-enactment society in the UK, they’re set to offer an immersive journey through the UK’s turbulent past, peppered with a few intriguing surprises.
A delightful adventure awaits the little ones as they embark on a treasure hunt, navigating the green spaces of this community garden.
Visitors will have a choice from a rich selection of artisanal foods, local brews, and unique beverages, this event is a testament to the vibrant food and drink scene in Banbury.
Trade and Exhibition Stands:
The festival is also a hub for craft enthusiasts, local organisations, and charities, all of whom will showcase their invaluable contributions to the community.
As the autumn leaves begin to turn, marking the transition of seasons, Banbury is ready to turn its pages of history, art, and community spirit. The Banbury Canal Festival is not just an event; it’s an emotion, a commemoration of life by the canal side.
So, ink these dates in your planner, gather your friends and family, and make your way to this grand festival. Come, raise a glass to the indomitable spirit of Banbury, a town that celebrates its past while dancing into the future.
There is much more to look forward to later this year with the Remembrance Sunday Parade taking place on the 12th of November. Starting from 11 am the Parade in the High Street will be followed by a service in St Mary’s Church and a wreath laying ceremony at the war memorial in People’s Park.
The year comes to a close with the Christmas Lights Switch On event on the 26th of November. This event will launch Banbury into the festive season with music, food, entertainment and of course Father Christmas all taking place between 11 am and 6 pm in the Market Place. Banbury will light up for the festive season, this will be another brilliant day for all the family. The event will be wrapped up with a blast of fireworks.
The Banbury Canal Festival is more than just a day out; it’s a snapshot of what makes our community special. From our shared history and arts to the simple joy of a boat ride or a local brew, it’s about celebrating what we have right here in Banbury. It’s our town, our festival, and it wouldn’t be the same without you. See you there!