In the wake of the New Year, we are looking forward to all that Cheltenham has to offer over the next 12 months. From Live Music, Theatre and Arts festivals to Sports and Racing there’s plenty to fill your calendar. This is a rundown of our top events to watch!
The smash hit, historically inspired, musical ‘SIX’ returns for a run at the Everyman Theatre on the 30th of January. The show tells the tale of the six wives of Henry VIII through the award-winning talent of Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss. Winning two ‘Tony’s’ and a ‘Grammy’ nomination, this show is a must-see.
Stuart Lee brings his signature dry, dead-pan humour to the stage of The Everyman from the 22nd to the 24th of January, in his solo show ‘Basic Lee’. The set pokes fun at the post-pandemic world in a ‘streamlined solo stand-up mode’. Please note this show is recommended for ages 14 and over.
This February, The Jockey Club hosts the unmissable Festival Trial Day. Catch an exclusive peek at the competition, set to appear in the Cheltenham Festival, in the final meet before the race for the cup.
DEYA brewery has fast become a hub of activity bringing sell-out gigs, food-trucks, and workshops to their taprooms all with delicious craft ales, beers and lagers on tap. On the 15th of February, Soft Machine bring the music from their hit 1975 ‘Softs’ album to DEYA. The avant jazz-rock band have shared the stage with iconic names such as Pink Floyd and the Jimi Hendrix Experience. Tickets are available now for over 18’s on Dice.
On the 18th of February, the Cheltenham Crafts Market comes to the promenade, a space for local artists and craftspeople to sell and display their work. Come along to view a vast selection of handmade, one-of-a-kind pieces all locally made.
The arrival of March marks the countdown to the Cheltenham Festival! The Iconic Gold Cup festival is bigger than ever this year, celebrating its 100-year anniversary. Running from the 12th to the 15th of March, the festival brings 4 action-packed days of first-class jump racing and hospitality to Cheltenham. The festival collides with St Patrick’s day for double the atmosphere and excitement builds toward the Gold Cup finale on the 15th. With over 240,000 visitors pouring into Cheltenham each year for the occasion the town is buzzing throughout festival week. If you can’t make it to the races, just stroll into the town centre to soak up the atmosphere. To find out more take a look at our Ultimate Gold Cup Guide .
Following their multi-award-winning success with ‘The Play that Goes Wrong’, Mischief Theatre return with a spin on the classic Peter Pan. Technical difficulties, faulty flying and a chaotic cast create what the New York Times describe as ‘gut-busting’ comedy on the journey to Never Land. The Cornley Drama Society bring this show to Cheltenham’s Everyman Theatre from the 9th-14th of April.
Showing a wider range of Art than any other British Fair, ‘Fresh Art Fair Cheltenham’ bring 4 days of viewings, demonstrations, and lectures to the Centaur building at Cheltenham Racecourse. The fair will run between the 25th and 28th of April. Tickets are now available for the ‘first pick’ Thursday private viewing or wait for free admission on the Friday!
The first week of May arrives at Cheltenham’s gardens and music venues to the swinging tones of blues, ragtime, and boogie-woogie as the iconic Jazz Festival comes to town. A sneak peak of the lineup promises appearances from the likes of Jack Savoretti and UB40 with more info to come. As the summer sun starts to peak through, Montpellier Gardens become a busy social spot to relax, grab a drink and enjoy the music.
Coined the ‘perfect family-friendly festival’ by the Daily Mail, Wychwood Festival brings three days of music, comedy, and workshops to the Cheltenham Racecourse. The festival puts on over 100 artists and 100 workshops, with something for every age-group, between the 31st of May and 2nd of June.
Annually, the Cheltenham Science Festival brings world-renowned scientists such as Brian Cox to Richard Dawkins to challenge ideas, inspire young minds and respond to age old questions. The six-day festival hosts over 100 events for schools, the public, and professionals between the 4th and 9th of June.
Voted the Best Medium Festival in the UK last year, 2000 Trees Festival returns to Upcote Farm, for their fourth year running, from the 10th to the 13th of July. The festival is praised for its diverse lineup across 5 stages with genres from punk and indie rock to folk and electronic music.
Sports fans can look forward to the Cheltenham Cricket Festival, the longest-running cricket festival in the world. The stunning grounds at Cheltenham College, the home of the Gloucestershire Cricket Club for over 150 years, provide the perfect backdrop for the event.
The Tuckwell Amphitheatre is a true gem of Cheltenham. Surrounded by trees and birdsong, the stage sets a magical scene for theatre productions and cinema under the stars. Throughout August, the theatre plays host to the annual open-air theatre festival, attracting top theatre companies bringing the works of Shakespeare, classic dramas, and new creations to this hidden nook of Cheltenham.
Save the flight and take a trip to the Cheltenham Playhouse Theatre on the 13th and 14th of August, to enjoy a taste of Paris. Trio ‘Swing from Paris’ bring an evening of ‘French-flavoured jazz and gypsy swing’ to the provided by trio ‘Swing from Paris’. The UK based trio bring an evening of ‘French-flavoured jazz and gypsy jazz’ to the Playhouse through renditions of the works of greats such as Django Reinhardt, Stephanne Grappelli and Piazzolla.
This year Cheltenham will welcome the longest-running burlesque show in the UK for an evening of 20’s uproar. Revisit the ‘Golden’ twenties through the ultimate variety show, blending comedy, cabaret, music, and circus.
Celebrating its 5th anniversary, the Cheltenham International Film Festival brings the best of world cinema to the Brewery Quarter from the 15th to the 24th of September.
Cheltenham is home to the world’s first Literature Festival and continues to celebrate the power of the written and spoken word, leading the way in literature and linguistics. Every year, the festival welcomes established and emerging authors, illustrators, and poets to speak about their work, influences, current events and more. Workshops and reading tents are open to local schools who flock to the Montpellier Gardens for this unique learning experience.
Huddle up for some spooky stories round the fire at ‘The Manor’ in Notgrove for a Hansel and Gretel themed campfire event on the 26th of October. Follow the gingerbread man through the woodland trail, visit the gingerbread house, and collect a gift from the wicked witch in this interactive evening of Halloween activities.
Start November with a bang at one of Cheltenham’s many fireworks displays. Head down to the Cricket Club, the Racecourse or the Cheltenham Ladies College for a magnificent display. Alternatively, walk to Leckhampton Hill and watch them all!
The November Meeting brings countryside celebration, family activities and thrilling races to the home of jump racing. The Open is the second most high profile meeting at Cheltenham and marks the start of the new jumping season.
Nowhere does the festive season quite like Cheltenham. Cotswold stone cottages, cosy fires, and snowy walks paint a romantic winter scene. While it may seem tempting to hunker down and embrace a cosy Christmas in, don’t miss out on all the festive activities Cheltenham has to offer. Ice-skating, late-night shopping, and light shows are just a handful of the exciting events to fill your Christmas calendar.