Hazy days of summer are edging ever closer and there's a whole array of festivals on the coast throughout the year so why not plan which one's float your boat with this great little 'save the date' reminder.....
Choose between festivals of the arts, photographs, walking, sport, music, food and drink, or simply just to celebrate all that’s great about our lovely Suffolk towns!
Whether you’re planning days out with the family, short breaks or holidays on The Suffolk Coast, we’ve put together a helpful ‘save the date’ listing of what’s coming up this year so you don’t miss out on any fabulous fiestas!
7th & 8th April - Ink Festival, Halesworth
INK Festival is an annual weekend festival of new short plays, musicals, radio and film taking place at The Cut in Halesworth. The festival includes a growing programme of workshops and talks, as well as a children’s programme.
Attended by famous names including writer/director Andie Powie, Times Journalist Libby Purves, and Richard Curtis and Emma Freud, who said: "LOVED the INK Festival. Short, brilliant performances in the coolest venue put together by the best creative team using the cream of Suffolk talent. May Halesworth be inked up forever!".
21st April - 20th May - Alde Valley Spring Festival
The Alde Valley Spring Festival is a four week celebration of food, farming, landscape and the arts in the beautiful Upper Alde Valley.
The Festival launch is on 21st April 2018 this year and events and exhibitions take place through until 20th May with over 40 local, regional, national and international artists and makers plus a programme of Festival Talks, Farm Suppers, Open Studios, Festival Shop, Hedge Quarters 2018 - Writing and Makers’ Residencies, Farm Nature Walks, The Big Spring Picnic and pop-up Tea Rooms! The exhibitions and many other events are free of charge. See the website for full details and to plan your visit.
12th May – 3rd June – Suffolk Walking Festival
Save the date for this fantastic walking festival, with a large programme of guided walks across Suffolk.
The 2018 Suffolk Walking Festival features over 120 events and promises to be the biggest and most ambitious festival to date.
There are walks for everyone including Dawn Chorus Walks, Nordic Walking, walks through Suffolk's Wool Towns and GeoCaching.
Now in its 11th year, the Walking Festival Fringe has been launched; a series of exciting and imaginative events that get you close to nature in the very heart of the countryside.
Ticket Sales will start in February with our 2018 brochure being launched in March.
8th - 24th June - Aldeburgh Festival, Snape Maltings
Aldeburgh Festival 2018 celebrates Britten and America. It also reflects 1948 – the remarkable period in post-war British history when the festival began and when so much of what we now regard to be the backbone of our cultural life was launched. In his centenary, the music of Bernstein plays a significant part in the festival which takes place at venues throughout Aldeburgh and in the stunning surroundings of the Snape Maltings Concert Hall.
29th June - 1st July - Felixstowe Book Festival
Felixstowe Book Festival has become one of the highlights of the East Anglian arts calendar and returns for another exciting programme of events from 27th June to 1st July 2018.
As well as a full programme of fiction, non-fiction events (covering politics, history, art and the hippy trail), workshops and discussions, there are screenings of the film Life on the Deben and an evening of Brazilian music.
The festival will be popping-up in some exciting new venues including beach huts, a container or ‘sea can’, the local Museum at Landguard Fort and the Seafront Gardens.
Authors making welcome return visits include Esther Freud (the Festival patron pictured above) and Louis De Bernières. Other festival highlights include Timothy Bentinck (‘David Archer’), Mark Billingham, Sir Vince Cable, Horatio Clare, Call the Midwife star Stephen McGann, Blake Morrison, Dame Jenni Murray, Juliet Nicolson, Simon Scarrow, Christopher Matthew and the actor Michael Pennington.
And be sure to check out the great selection of events for children and teens!
6th - 8th July - Maverick Festival
Established in 2008, Maverick Festival is now the UK's leading Americana event showcasing the best roots music from both sides of the Atlantic. Set amongst the restored Victorian barns and out-buildings of Easton Farm Park, nestled deep in the Suffolk countryside, the festival also hosts films, workshops and performances from over fifty different artists across six stages, indoors and out.
12th – 15th July - Latitude Festival, Southwold
Save the date for 2018 Latitude Festival, which will take place from 12th to 15th July at Henham Park, Southwold, Suffolk. This year's line up packs some punches, with Solange, The Killers and Alt-J headlining, plus The Vaccines, Jessie Ware and Rag N' Bone Man.
As always, there's an eclectic mix of dance, comedy and music, with Harry Hill, Bridget Christie and Sadler's Wells all taking to the stage. Tickets are now on sale and more acts to be announced!
August - Snape Proms, Snape Maltings
Every Summer musicians from around the world converge on Snape for a series of outstanding concerts in one of the world’s great concert halls. From big bands and orchestras to folk groups and solo artists, there’s music for everyone at the Snape Proms.
The programme for Snape Proms will be announced in April but we will be revealing more information over the coming months!
17th – 19th August – FolkEast, Saxmundham
Folk music and art at its best, from near and far, with an added Suffolk twist, 17th - 19th August 2018, hosted at the Great Glemham Estate. Acts this year include Show of Hands with Amanda Sykes, Oysterband, Irish Mythen, Tim Edey, The Magnificent AK47 and The Gigspanner Big Band, with more acts announced soon!
Tickets are on sale now!
27th August - 2nd September - Cactus and Chilli Festival
A week long festival celebrating all things Spicy and Spiky, at Urban Jungle there will be an amazing selection of Cacti with 20% off all week. 100s of brightly coloured chillies, of all shapes, sizes and heat along with a menu of Central and Southern American inspired dishes, street food and cocktails.
Browse the amazing selection of hardy and interior Cacti, Succulents, Agaves, Yuccas, and other desert lovers, with some rare and unusual species too. Wander the Edible Jungle and discover 100s of brightly coloured chillies, of all shapes, sizes and heat. A selection of these will be available to try and buy.
There will be expert talks on growing and caring for Cacti and Succulents in the UK, growing and harvesting chillies, and you can find out which chillies are just right for your favourite dishes.
Plus there's treasure hunts, games, music and fun for the whole family.
11th - 16th September - HighTide Festival, Aldeburgh
HighTide is a theatre company and charity based in East Anglia that has an unparalleled eleven-year history of successfully launching the careers of emerging British playwrights. This will be the 4th year that the festival takes place in Aldeburgh, bringing some fantastic plays, comedians, family shows, brand new play readings, talks and more to the lovely venues throughout the town.
The full programme will be announced on 22 June, when tickets will also go on sale for this year's events, we'll keep you posted but save the date now!
28th – 29th September - Aldeburgh Food & Drink Festival
The popular food festival is held in the historic and beautiful setting of Snape Maltings, the home of Aldeburgh Music. The festival is not for profit and widely acknowledged as one of the best in Britain, celebrating the very best of the county’s produce, farmers, growers, food and drink.
The festival, which aims to encourage a connection between people and the environment they live in, will be hosting a Wild Suffolk area where you can learn about foraging, open- fire cooking, fishing, game and the wildlife of Suffolk, as well as the Adnams Drinks Experience led by beer expert Melissa Cole and the Hillfarm Family Meadow.
East Anglia is known for its abundance of fantastic quality produce, the landscape providing the perfect environment for a variety of different harvest. The role Suffolk plays in providing the rest of England with this produce is apparent throughout the festival.
2nd September - Art on the Prom, Felixstowe
Art on the Prom is a contemporary Art Fair with over 100 professional and hobby artists displaying and selling original work on Felixstowe’s popular sea front promenade.
The art fair gives professional and hobby artists the chance to display and sell original artwork including paintings, ceramics, photography, glass, jewellery and textiles.
Aspiring artists aged 15 and over can this year take part in a Drawing Workshop led by experienced artist and teacher, Malcolm Cudmore.
14th October - The Great Framlingham Sausage Festival
Save the date as Framlingham hosts its annual celebration of the Great Sausages that are made in East Anglia using local ingredients and some mouth-watering recipes.
During the one-day festival, Sausage makers take over the town of Framlingham, sizzling sausages for you to try. In addition to the mouth-watering array of bangers on offer, there's entertainment, free workshops and food and drink stalls for you to browse.
2nd - 4th November - Aldeburgh Poetry Festival
The Aldeburgh Poetry Festival returns this November to continue the heritage of poetry on the Suffolk Coast.
This year's festival is curated by the Poetry School and the poet Paul Stephenson. With 20 years of experience as the UK’s leading provider of poetry education, the Poetry School promises a high-quality, unique and diverse line-up of workshops, talks and educational opportunities for writers.
November - Aldeburgh Documentary Festival
The Aldeburgh DocFest is a very special weekend in a magical place on the edge of the North Sea. DocFest is organised and delivered by the Aldeburgh Cinema Trust, a Registered Charity also responsible for the year-round operation of the Aldeburgh Cinema, a community film theatre that has shown movies consistently since 1919.
Dates are yet to be confirmed but the festival usually takes place in early November - check back later in the year for more details!