The air is starting to feel crisper and the leaves are beginning to tumble from the trees which can only mean one thing: autumn is on its way! Summer is coming to an end with sunnier days feeling a little cooler, so now is the perfect time to start planning for next season. Summer holidays may be filled with trips to the beach, hazy and hedonistic music festivals and sunny weekends away, but autumn can bring even more fun as the coming months are filled with exciting events across the country. You may find the beach a bit too cold, so instead swap that for a picnic in a park to admire the leaves changing and falling. Go for long walks through forests, fields and national parks to make the most of the autumnal colours and fresh breezes. Don’t let the lack of sun dash your hopes for an amazing autumn.
BFI London Film Festival
This year is the 61st BFI London Film Festival and it hasn’t lost its momentum even after all this time. There will be film events across London throughout the first two weeks of august with a number of world premieres and film competitions. If you want to escape the cold weather, grab yourself a ticket to one of the critically acclaimed films set to be screened during the festival.
4th -15th October, London (various locations)
Dursley Walking Festival
Dursley in Gloucestershire is a beautiful hilly location in the south Cotswolds. It is the perfect getaway to escape city life and is even more idyllic if you love going on long countrywalks. In October the market town offers up a walking festival in a gorgeous location. You can take a short 2 mile photography walk to experience some stunning woodland whilst local photographer Tim Taphouse gives you tips on capturing the perfect picture. Whether you’re a novice or experienced, this walk is for all photography lovers. If you’re seeking more of a challenge and want to really stretch your legs you can take a 14 mile walk through Lantern Way which includes hikes and some climbs through beautiful rural surroundings. You’ll even be rewarded a certificate on completion, and runners are welcome too.
5th – 8th October, Dursley
Nothing warms you up on a cool autumn day like a few pints of Germany’s finest beer. Throw in some hot bratwurst, some music and great friends and you’ve got an excellent weekend planned! Oktoberfest will be taking over venues across the UK throughout October, so no matter where you are there’s bound to be a festival on near you. The locations include Huddersfield, Preston, Derby, Weston-Super-Mare, Maidstone, Newport, Darlington, Rotherham, Ipswich, Boston, Middlesbrough, Bradford and Hemel Hempstead. Drink steins filled with authentic delicious German beer while enjoying the Oompa band and chowing down on pretzels and schnitzels.
6th – 28th October, across the UK
Southport Comedy Festival
Missed the Edinburgh fringe this summer? Don’t fret because the humour doesn’t stop there. Southport offers its annual comedy festival in October to keep you tickled through autumn. Theatres, hotels and rugby clubs across Southport will be hosting some of the country’s funniest talent, so you can laugh away your autumn evenings. You can catch some of the best comedians the UK and overseas, from Jason Manford to Jason Byrne, and Rich Hall to Jo Caulfield.
7th – 22nd October, Southport (various locations)
Callander Jazz and Blues Festival
Scotland’s biggest jazz and blues festival is back this autumn in the picturesque Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park. The weekend-long festival is home to some of the UK’s most popular jazz and blues solo artists and big bands. You can expect to see the likes of The Revolutionaries, The Kyla Brox Band, The Andy Taylor Group and The Deke McGee Band.
29th September – 1st October, Callander
Lancaster Music Festival
For a fun-filled, musical long weekend, head to Lancaster to keep the summer festival vibes buzzing across the seasons. The acts have yet to be announced, but the festival has had nine years of solid musicians playing so you can expect it’ll be another great year. The festival celebrates the diversity of Lancaster’s music scene and is complete with a camp site at Lancaster Cricket Club for the full festival feel.
12th – 16th October, Lancaster
Hertford Food and Drink Festival
Calling all foodies: this food and drink festival is where you need to spend this particular weekend in autumn. There are a range of cookery classes to partake in in local restaurants, numerous farmers markets to pick up fresh goods, live cookery demos and food stalls. You can even spot a few celebrity chefs showing everyone how it’s done! On the last day of the festival there is the Herford Castle beer and World Food festival where you can enjoy a variety of local and national beers and ales, some delicious grub, entry to the castle and some live music.
6th – 8th October, Hertford