15 things to do in Norfolk this Spring Bank Holiday weekend
- Credit: Archant
Strumpshaw Steam Rally fires up for its 25th anniversary, Dad's Army invade North Norfolk Railway, there is two-wheel fun at Holkham and Sandingham, plus fireworks, country fairs, retro computer games and more for all the family.
Strumpshaw Steam Rally
Strumpshaw Steam Museum, May 27-29, 9am-5pm, £10, under-16s free, 01603 714535, www.strumpshawsteammuseum.co.uk
Boiler suits, brass polish and bunting preparations are well in hand for the 25th Strumpshaw Steam Rally. More than 500 exhibits will be on show at the annual rally including 50 steam engines, road rollers and wagons. From the tiniest steam-powered models to a huge steam-driven sawmill, there will be just about every size and type of engine on show. The oldest exhibit will be the 140-year-old Charles Burrell threshing engine, Century, built in Thetford in 1877. The engine, owned by Richard Parrott, from Weeting Steam Fair, which was used on farms in East Anglia to drive some of the earliest agricultural machinery, became derelict in the 1950s. Strumpshaw's own grand lady, the 95-year-old Princess Royal will be back at the rally this year after an 18 month lay off for essential repairs. Other attractions at the rally will include a display of vintage cars, vintage tractors and agricultural machinery, train and fairground rides, craft stalls and food and drink.
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Great Yarmouth Food Festival
Market Square, Great Yarmouth, May 26-27, 10am-4pm, admission free, 01493 846125
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Great Yarmouth dishes up a culinary delight, with the opportunity to buy food and drink from special stalls, watch exciting cooking demonstrations by catering students from Great Yarmouth College, sample free tastings, and discover what is available throughout the year at the historic market. There will also be a 15-stall Italian market, selling specialist Italian produce.
Toys and Tunes/Rock n Roll at Gressenhall
Gressenhall Farm & Workhouse, May 27-28/May 29, 10am-5pm, standard admission charges apply, 01362 860563, email@example.com
Gressenhall hosts two special Spring Bank Holiday events over the weekend. Step back in time and experience the life of a child in the 1950s (May 27-28). From hula hoops to rock 'n' roll, discover what it was like to grow up in the fabulous fifties. The return to when Rock 'n' Roll was King with the Rock n Roll day (May 29). Experience the glamour and find out how to get the 'look'. Get your pulse racing and learn the dance steps to live music from the Austin Beats. Visit the vintage market and see classic cars.
Houghton International Horse Trails
Houghton, King's Lynn, Norfolk, May 25-28, gates open 8.30am, on gate £10 (Thurs-Fri), £15 (Sat-Sun), children £5 (Fri)/$6 (Sat-Sun), £35 family (Sat-Sun), 01485 210070, www.musketeer.co.uk
Houghton Horse Trials offer exhilarating sporting action, a spectacular setting, entertainment for young and old, plus shopping at over 70 trade stands in the magnificent grounds of Houghton Hall. The event welcomes over 700 horses each year, including more than 350 international competitors. It hosts the only British leg of the FEI Nations Cup, with teams from as far afield as Australia and New Zealand. There is also charity camel racing. Children's entertainment comes from Razz and Pearl's Circus Workshops, plus a traditional vintage fair.
Bure Valley Railway, Norfolk, May 27-29, full details at 01263 733858 www.bvrw.co.uk
Spring Bank Holiday again sees all the Bure Valley Railway engines, coaches and rolling stock will be action for a special intensive timetable throughout the weekend to allow visitors the opportunity to see as many different locos as possible hard at work over the nine miles between Aylsham and Wroxham. The restored Wroxham Signal Box will also be open providing unparalleled views of the comings and goings of both the Bure Valley and mainline railway. To keep younger visitors entertained there will be a sticker activity prize sheet. Under-5s travel free.
Town Centre, Wymondham, May 27, 11am-2pm, free, www.wymfest.org.uk
Wymondham Music Festival's annual Town Busking Day returns with musicians performing all over the town centre creating a wonderful atmosphere. Performers of all musical types come from near and far. Take a musical wander around the town and listen out for the best. If you have never busked but fancy joining in the fun, individual musicians and groups are welcome. Register at the Market Place from 11am or call 01953 333500.
Holkham Estate, Norfolk, May 27-29, visitors £5, under-16s free, www.pedalnorfolk.co.uk
Cycle festival back for its fifth year at Holkham with family-friendly as the main theme for 2017. Entry to the festival is free of charge to visitors who pre-register for one of the 20, 50 or 100 mile rides. For the first time, Pedal Norfolk will host a mountain bike race with a 5.5mile loop surrounding Holkham Lake. Also new for this year is an Eastern Counties closed road race which will circle a 10km loop. Lots more family fun, including two-different wheels with Segways.
Dad's Army Live
North Norfolk Railway, May 28-29, full detail at 01263 820800, nnrailway.co.uk
Popular family friendly weekend that you'd be a stupid boy to miss! Re-live some of the best moments from the Norfolk-filmed ever-green BBC comedy with live action from Thetford Dad's Army Museum. The famous 'Royal Train' episode of Dad's Army was filmed at Weybourne Station back in 1973. Now Corporal Jones' much loved Butchers van brings the Walmington-on-Sea stars to life again as the station is taken over by the Home Guard courtesy of Thetford Dad's Army Museum. Timescape will be entertaining one and all with songs of the era and the NAAFI will be open selling supplies!
Sandringham Estate, Norfolk, May 28, £10 adults, £5 children, under-12s free, full details at experiencefreedomcycling.com
Active families can also get on their bikes as Sandringham hosts the CycleFest family fun cycling experience offering an action-packed itinerary of things to see and do including a summer fete, Xtreme stunt team, dog display, craft marquee, trade stalls, Segways and climbing wall. One of the main attractions is a family cycle ride leaving at 11am. Riders will have the opportunity to join the leisurely nine-mile loop through the beautiful grounds of Her Majesty The Queen's country retreat and back along quiet rural lanes.
North Norfolk Country Fair
George Weston Community Field, Weybourne, May 28, 10am-4pm, £3.50, under-15s free, 07775 741752, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Just across the road from Weybourne Windmill on the A149 Coast Road (Sheringham Road) a traditional country fair that is a great day out for the whole family, with arena entertainment all day – lurcher racing, falconry display, ferret racing, hunt hounds, Cromer and Sheringham brass band and singing. There will be classic cars, gun dog scurry, rides and attractions, car boot area, plus two large marquees - one with arts and craft stalls and one with local food and drink stalls.
Hemsby, May 28, 10pm, admission free, 01493 846346
Ohh and ahhh at a fantastic free aerial firework display on Hemsby beach on Whitsun Sunday. Fireworks will be let off from the beach and can be easily seen along the length of Beach Road. Make an evening of it and visit some of the shops, eateries and attractions that Hemsby has to offer visitors. Firework displays than take place on Tuesday nights during the school summer holidays throughout the summer.
Hoveton Hall Estate, Hoveton, near Wroxham, Norfolk, May 28-29, 10.30am-5pm, garden entry £7.50 (£6.50 cons), £4 children, under-4s free, www.hovetonhall.co.uk
A proper early-summer traditional fete. See the colourful displays from the East Norfolk Militia, a local Red Coat Napoleonic era re-enactment group as well as falconry displays, Punch & Judy and children's storyteller. Families can also try their hand at some old fashioned garden games, maypole dancing and clay pigeon shooting. There will be a range of craft and art displays. For those of you with four legged friends why not enter them into our fun dog show.
Ardea 90th Anniversary
Norfolk Broads Yacht Club, Wroxham, May 28-29, full details at www.wherryyachtcharter.org
Ardea is the newest arrival at the Wherry Yacht Charter (WYC). Her unusual history involves time in Paris as a houseboat. To elebrate the 90th birthday of this pleasure wherry you can see the whole fleet on Wroxham Broad (May 29, 10am-5pm, free entry). Take a trip on a wherry yacht or Broads yacht, find out about the history and work of WYC. Meanwhile there is also an open-air picnic concert beside Wroxham Broad (May 28, 5pm, £7.50, £5 children, under-3s free) featuring a jazz band playing from aboard Ardea, followed by more music and full bar in the NBYC clubhouse.
Bircham Windmill, Snettisham Road, Great Bircham, May 29, from 10am, normal admission, 01485 578393, www.birchamwindmill.co.uk
Another great line up for the Bank Holiday Country Day at Bircham Windmill with Morris dancing, sheep shearing and sheep dog demos, horse dressage and children's show jumping (no ponies - just children!). Also craft stalls and demos, dog show and pony rides.
Norwich Gaming Festival
The Forum, Norwich, May 29-Jun 3, 10am-4pm, admission free, www.norwichgamingfestival.com
Popular celebration of gaming returns promising lots of family fun for all ages — and joystick expertise! Retro Arcade is back with newly expanded selection of classic arcade machines, learn about the history of gaming with lots of consoles and games to jog your childhood memories, the Gaming Village outside The Forum will be full of goodies, seminars, talks, workshops, demos and don the headsets in the VR Zone.