7 cheap or free things to do in Norfolk this weekend

Junkyard Market offers tables for two, four or six with table service.

Head to street food event Junkyard Market in Norwich this weekend, which is free to book. - Credit: Chris Harvey

From the return of a popular outdoor bar to open gardens, there are plenty of cheap or free things to do in Norfolk this weekend. 

These are just some of the great events taking place across the county on May 8 and 9.

The Botanical Garden Bar is back in Norwich by popular demand, with Norfolk food and drink on the menu. 

The Botanical Garden Bar is back in Norwich by popular demand, with Norfolk food and drink on the menu. - Credit: Rob Dodsworth

1. What: Botanical Garden Bar 

Where: St Simon and St Jude Church, 49 Elm Hill, Norwich, NR3 1HG

When: Ongoing, Thursdays and Fridays: slots from 5.30pm to 10.30pm, Saturdays: slots from 12.30pm to 10.30pm (pizzas from 5.30pm) 

Cost: Free but booking a table is essential at curiousdirective.com/botanical-garden-bar 

Award-winning theatre company curious directive is bringing back its popular outdoor bar this weekend, which it launched in the garden of its base at the church last summer.

The bar was part of the company's coronavirus recovery plan and is back by popular demand with local wines and spirits, international wines, pizzas inspired by places in Norfolk and global sharing boards. 

It is the perfect spot to escape the hustle and bustle of the city in beautiful surroundings and some of the gins are infused with fruits and botanicals from the garden. 

Bishop's Garden, Norwich. Picture : ANTONY KELLY

Bishop's Garden, Norwich. Picture : ANTONY KELLY - Credit: copyright ARCHANT 2017

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2. What: Bishop's Garden Open Day 

Where: Bishop’s House, Norwich, NR3 1SB

When: May 9, time slots 10.30am to 12pm, 12.30pm to 2pm and 2.30pm to 4pm

Cost: £5, children and wheelchair users free, booking essential at shop.stmartinshousing.org.uk

Bishop Graham and his wife Rachel are opening their private garden to the public on select dates this year and this weekend it is in aid of Norwich homeless charity St Martins. 

The event will be an opportunity to view the gardens in their spring splendour and a chance to enjoy refreshments and entertainment in a safe outdoor setting.

The Bishop's Garden will also be selling plants on the day and the nearest car park is by the Adam & Eve pub. 

Krispie Crazy is one of the businesses taking part in the Eccles village Garage and Table Top Sale this weekend. 

Krispie Crazy is one of the businesses taking part in the Eccles village Garage and Table Top Sale this weekend. - Credit: Polly W

3. What: Garage and Table Top Sale 

Where: Garnier Hall, Station Road, Eccles, NR16 2JG 

When: May 9, 10am to 2pm 

Cost: Free

A Garage and Table Top sale is taking place in the village of Eccles, near Attleborough, this Sunday and there will be stalls at the village hall.

This will include local businesses Krispie Crazy, Sweet Bee and Lily's Boutique and Eccles residents will also have garden and garage stalls. 

Tea and coffee will also be available and visitors can park at the village hall. 

The cocktail bar at Junkyard Market is inside a shipping container. 

The cocktail bar at Junkyard Market is inside a shipping container. - Credit: Chris Harvey

4. What: Junkyard Market 

Where: Car park outside St Mary's Works (off Duke Street), Norwich, NR3 1QA

When: Fridays: 5pm to 10pm, Saturdays and Sundays: 12pm to 10pm 

Cost: Pre-book a slot at junkyardmarket.co.uk, refundable deposit £10 for tables of two or four or £20 for six

Popular street food event Junkyard Market is back by popular demand, after sell-out events last summer and at Christmas. 

At the event, there is a mix of local food vendors and those from further afield and all ordering is done on app.

The market also features bars inside shipping containers, with drinks including cocktails and fruity beers from London craft brewer Jubel, and refundable deposits have been introduced this time to prevent no-shows. 

A plant sale is taking place in Wreningham this weekend. 

A plant sale is taking place in Wreningham this weekend. - Credit: dmf87/iStock/Getty Images Plus

5. What: Plant Sale

Where: All Saints Church car park, Wreningham, NR16 1BH 

When: May 8, 10am to 12pm

Cost: Free

A plant sale is taking place this weekend in the car park of All Saints Church to raise funds.

There will be a good selection of annual and perennial plants, bedding plants and shrubs, plus garden sundries and plant pots.

It is cash only and make sure to bring boxes and bags to take away your purchases and face masks are required. 


Swimming Home is part of Norwich Theatre's RE:CHARGE season. - Credit: Contributed

6. What: Norwich Theatre's RE-CHARGE Season: Swimming Home 

Where: Online 

When: Until May 13, 10am and 8.30pm 

Cost: £6, norwichtheatre.org

While you may not be able to take your seats in an auditorium just yet, you can enjoy live shows and activities from home as part of Norwich Theatre's digital season this spring.

Swimming Home is a unique piece of theatre that invites you to explore your relationship with water and the environment around you.

It is an immersive experience that allows participants the opportunity to practise mindfulness through Autoteatro, a technique where individuals both experience and contribute to the production through a headset.

Visitors enjoying Stody Lodge Gardens.

Visitors enjoying Stody Lodge Gardens. - Credit: Stody Lodge Gardens

7. What: Stody Lodge Gardens Open Day 

Where: Stody Estate, NR24 2ER

When: May 9, 1pm to 5pm

Cost: £8, payable by card or cash at the entrance gate, children under 12 free, see full information at stodyestate.co.uk/visitor-info

Stody Lodge Gardens, the spectacular rhododendron and azalea garden near Holt in north Norfolk, is welcoming back visitors on selected dates this May.

With 14-acres to explore, Stody Lodge Gardens is the perfect afternoon outing for those looking to enjoy colourful floral displays, fresh air and delicious takeaway teas in aid of local charities.

As a larger garden, timed entry slots are not required and visitors do not need to pre-book tickets.