Listed below are a wide range of festivals across the county (if you are wanting beer festivals, we have a separate beer festivals listing!).
Listings are free – fill in the Add an Event form to let us know about any festivals you are involved with or that you think should be on this list.
Horror on Sea Film Festival Running from 17th – 19th January 2014, three days of horror films at the Park Inn Palace Hotel, Southend. more details
Words in Walden Spring Festival 2014
Friday 28th February – Friday 28th March
This is the 14th literary festival to be held in the town There are events happening at venues across Saffron Walden, speakers include the historian David Starkey, poet Andrew Motion and gardener and writer Chris Beardshaw more details
Essex Book Festival.
Running throughout March 2014 with events across the county.
Southend Film Festival 2014
Friday 2nd May to BH Monday 5th May 2014.
The Opening Gala will feature no fewer than three comedy shorts, featuring Peter Sellers, that have been thought lost for over 50 years.
Harlow Festival 2014.
2013 saw over 20 events celebrating arts, culture, music and heritage across Harlow.
Mersea Island Food Drink and Leisure Festival.
Saturday 24th May 2014 and Sunday 25th May 2014, 11:00am – 5:00pm.
There’s food and drink, arts and crafts, entertainment, music and more.
Rock for Havens Sake Music Festival
The Mill Art and Events Centre, Bellingham Lane, Rayleigh.
Sunday 18th May 2014.
The festival will be raising money for Havens Adult and Children’s Hospices, with a wide range of music. All day food, all day bar, all day music. An event for all the family.
Thaxted Church, Thaxted
20th June to 13th July 2014.
The glorious Thaxted Festival was first started by none other than Gustav Holst in 1913, the modern event began in 1980. To celebrate the centenary of another great composer Benjamin Britten, the theme for this year’s festival is “The Riches of British Music”. There will be performances by amongst others the Brandenburg Sinfonia Strings,T enebrae who are a chamber choir, and the cellist Guy Johnston a former BBC Young Muscician of the Year who will be performing with the pianist Alasdair Beaston.
Maldon Arts Festival
Awaiting details of 2014!
Harwich Festival of the Arts
25th June 2014 and 7th July 2014
The Harwich Festival of the Arts provides a range of events in differing locations – jazz, spoken word, classical, brass bands, piano, chamber music and more!
Fling Festival of Assorted Amusements 2014
Chelmsford Central Park
Saturday 29th June 2014.
New faces will mingle amongst acts back by popular demand as they fill the huge tented village of adults-only amusements from 12noon to 11pm at Hylands Park, Chelmsford.
Burnham Art Trail
23rd June 2014 – 29th June 2014.
The trail takes place at various locations in Burnham on Crouch. With lots of local artist displaying their work which is usually for sale
The 3foot People Festival
24th June 2014 – 26th June 2014.
This is the largest outdoor festival exclusively for children aged 5 and under in the UK with nearly 13,000 people attending last year.
Leigh Folk Festival 2014
The Leigh Folk Festival 2013 took place between 27th June 2013 and 30th June 2013, with lots of fine music and also an evening of storytelling with a witchcraft theme.
more details of the 2014 event from them when available.
Colchester Food and Drink Festival
he Colchester Food and Drink Festival took place once again at Colchester Castle Park on Saturday 29th June 2013 and Sunday 30th June 2013.
more details about the 2014 event when available.
Sunday 6th July 2014 – midday til late.
More than just a huge party – it inspires the community to embrace equality There’ll be a chance to Watch fantastic live entertainment. Listen to great bands, discover services provided by local groups, browse the market stalls enjoy delicious food and drink and meet new friends
Bures Music Festival
Wednesday 9th July 2013 – Sunday 13th July 2014
A wide range of music, and much more…
Victory Recreation Ground, Tollesbury
Saturday 12th July 2014. Time: 11:00 – 21:00
I think this might be one of the smallest festivals in Essex this summer, it might actually be a village fete, but they promise live music, a fun run, stalls, barbecue, Calvors bar, Pimms tent and face painting. So hopefully a fun afternoon in the sun.
Friday 18th July 2014 and Saturday 20th July 2014.
more details promised soon…
Saturday 19th – Sunday 20th July 2014
Showcasing great music, great entertainment and great people
Essex Festival of Food and Drink 2014
Saturday 19th July 2014 – Sunday 20th July 2014.
Cressing Temple Barns.
Village Green Southend 2014
Saturday 13th July 2013.
Over 30,000 attended last year! More details when available.
I AM MUSIC Festival
Castle Park, Colchester
Saturday 26th July 2014
“Colchester – get ready for your BIGGEST Summer Festival. I Am Music Community Group present the I AM MUSIC Festival Live in Castle Park! The festival will raise funds and awareness for the charities Beat Bullying and Only Coward’s Carry, as well as involving 1000 performers entertaining thousands of spectators. I Am Music festival is set to be a great day out packed with live music, dancing, DJs and much more with tickets starting at just £32 excluding booking fee.”
Saturday 26th July 2014.
Harwich Sea Festival & Lifeboat Day
We had had a great time there in 2012 – click here for our article, with pix. Harwich.
more details of the 2014 event when available.
Brightlingsea Free Music Festival
Friday 1st August 2014 to Sunday 3rd August 2014.
Saffron Walden Maze Festival took place between 16th and 19th August 2013. More details about 2014 when available.
Wine & Cider Festival
Dedham Vale Vineyard
30th to 31st August 2014
Promising live music,food and plenty of wine, cider and fun.
More details http://www.dedhamvalevineyard.com/
Colchester Free Festival
The family-run music event in Stow Maries going from strength to strength!
more details when available
Hatfield Forest hosted its forest-based event on Friday 6th September 2013 to Sunday 8th September 2013.
more details of 2014 when available
Colchester Oyster Festival
More details to follow.
Roman River Music Festival
19th September 2014 and 5th October 2014
Running across a range of ecclesiastical and interesting locations in North Essex/South Suffolk we’ll bring you more details when available. We went to one memorable event in 2012 : click here for our article with some pix. more details