9 Great Events for May Day 2017 around North Cornwall

If you’re lucky enough to be in North Cornwall this May Bank holiday (and not at work!) then you have some great options within reach.  Whether you want to let down your hair and dance through the streets, or quietly investigate ancient books, there is something for everyone in our 9 Great May Day events round-up.  If we’ve missed an event, let us know on social media or in the comments below.

Padstow Obby Oss Day – © Copyright Andy F

Padstow May Day, Padstow

This one is the golden ticket!  May Day (or ‘Obby ‘Oss Day as it is known) is the biggest day in Padstow’s calendar. It is not unusual to see 30,000 people crammed into this little town.  The “osses”, swirling and dancing proceed through Padstow’s decorated streets taunted by a Teazer. As the procession moves around the town, dancers perform a traditional dance to the sound of musicians and drummers. Last, but not least, are the followers who join the procession every year singing of the traditional May Song.  A brilliant day, but get there early and use the Park and Ride.

Lanhydrock House, near Bodmin,
11am – 5pm

Incunables is a term that refers to early books printed in Europe before 1501. Lanhydrock has 28 of this type of book, unusually high for a private collection. This exhibition in the historic Gallery will draw on the library collection in order to show some of our early printed works. This will be the first time that our incunabula will be shown in a single exhibition.

PictureArt8 Festival, Various locations around Newquay

Art8 is Newquay’s Arts and Culture Festival – four days bursting at the seams with events, exhibits and workshops involving film, craft, spoken word, dance, photography, theatre, music, literature and more.  It’s a community festival with something for everyone – young and old, residents and visitors alike – with all activities free or low-cost.

Castle Drogo, Drewsteignton (easy access from A30)
11am – 4pm

Discover more about Drogo as you follow the spotter sheet around the garden and grounds. There’s lots of fun and games to be had on the croquet lawn where you can try your hand at tennis. Normal admission applies.

Lewannick May Celebrations, Lewannick, near Launceston
1pm onwards.

Craft and food marquees, grand raffle, BBQ, hot drinks, stalls and activities for all ages. Maypole dancing and May-Maid Parade.  Archer Arms open all day with with live music in the evening.

Exeter Food Festival, Northernhay Gardens and Exeter Castle
10am – 5pm

A bit of a drive, we admit, but this award winning food and drink festival is an established favourite for all foodies.  The festival attracts an international audience with visitors attending from far and wide to buy delicious goodies, watch top chefs in the live Festival Cookery Theatre and get involved in workshops and demonstrations.

Bradworthy Arts Festival, Bradworthy village
10am – 4pm

A small, friendly village festival that includes art exhibitions, craft stalls, lots of live music and various workshops you can join in with.  In the evening the Bradworthy Inn will be open for food and live music. Mobile food units include wood fired pizzas and Kirsty’s kitchen.

Coastal-yarns Kaffe Fassett Exhibition, Heritage Centre, Bude Castle, Bude
10am – 5pm

This little exhibition focuses on the work of Bude knitters CoastalYarn, following the designs of the famous Kaffe Fassett.  If you like wooly jumpers and retro patterns, this is worth a look.  While you’re here, check out the Bude Castle museum (for free) which charts the history of Bude, and the galleries upstairs.

Writers in Residence Open Day, Bucks Mills cabin, near Bideford & Hartland
10am – 4pm

A rare opportunity to see inside this tiny artists’ retreat which has been left largely untouched since the 1970’s. Meet the current writers in residence, and learn how this group of local authors have been inspired by the landscape of North Devon.