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City Festival

City Festival banner 1

City Festival
Saturday 12 August - Monday 28 August 2017
Various venues

The City Festival celebrates Leicester in the heart of the city. Taking place over seventeen fun-packed days, sites across the city centre will be filled with street entertainment, sports, culture, music, art, heritage and more. 

Now in its 5th year the City Festival has grown to be one of the major events in Leicester’s festival calendar. New additions for 2017 include Big Weekender, a taste of some of the best bits of the annual Leicester Comedy Festival; City Streets, a six day street festival featuring unique performances from national and international street artists; Night of Festivals South Asia’s cultural celebration to mark the 70th Anniversary of Indian and Pakistan Independence and a feast of music with Leicester Music Trail, a range of special events showcasing the best of music and performances. 

Many regular events will be returning this year including Get Active, Ride Leicester, Leicester Belgrave Mela, Journeys Festival International, Cosmopolitan Carnival and the ever popular Old Town Festival.

Offering a vast programme including old favourites as well as new additions, City Festival provides a great reason to stay local this August! 

Some highlights are detailed below and the full programme will be posted here at the end of June. 

Leicester Music Trail
Friday 11 – Monday 28 August

Various dates & times over multiple locations
A new and exciting, citywide initiative celebrating music in all its forms and embracing performance, radio and the visual arts. Leicester Music Trail will link multiple music-themed events across a variety of venues combining existing regular music activities with a range of special events. Showcasing the vibrant local scene the trail provides a musical strand throughout the seventeen days of the City Festival.
W: 7vmm.net

Cosmopolitan Carnival
Saturday 12 August, 2pm - 9.30pm
Jubilee Square, high Street, Clock Tower & Humberstone Gate

Celebrating the vibrant and cultural mix of the city through every imaginable art form. The streets will come alive with a carnival atmosphere of arts, music and dance.
W: kaleidoscopyarts.wordpress.com

Ride Leicester Festival
Saturday 12 – Sunday 27 August
Citywide

A two-week celebration of cycling in a people friendly city. Includes Castle Classic race events around the Mile Straight, City Ride family ride from Clock Tower to King Power and all things in between. A packed programme of rides, bike films, social events and a colourful Rickshaw Run and parade.
W: visitleicester.info

Leicester Castle Classic
Saturday 12 August - Sunday 13 August

Racing around the Old Town and Mile Straight Sportive, Triathlon & Go Ride Racing from King Power to Cobbles and culminating in the finale of British Cycling’s Grand Prix Road Series. Look out for Eurosport cameras and a spectacular splash of colour on the streets of Leicester.
W: visitleicester.info

Get Active!
Sunday 13 August, 11am - 4pm
Humberstone Gate West, Gallowtree Gate and the Clock Tower

Leicester’s Sport and Wellbeing Festival will provide expert advice and tips on how to build activity into your daily routine and Get Active! Featuring over 20 physical activity and sport taster sessions, exercise demonstrations from the experts, talks from leading fitness professionals in the city and free health checks. Get Active will provide you with the right stepping stones towards a healthier, happier and more active you.
W: leicester.gov.uk/sport

City Ride
Sunday 13 August, 12.30pm – 4.30pm

8km of traffic-free streets City Ride Leicester provides an exciting colourful route linking King Power Stadium, Leicester Castle and Richard III Visitor Centre. Active fun for all the family with entertainment along the way and the only ride this summer that includes a unique pitch-side route through a Premier League football stadium. Look out for the Street Velodrome, BMX Champ Keelan Phillips and rickshaws celebrating Leicester communities.
W: letsride.co.uk/city-ride/leicester

The Rickshaw Run
Sunday 13 August
Cathedral Gardens

Beginning our journey through UK-India Year of Culture, vibrant rickshaws will lead thousands of cyclists through the streets of Leicester. Join us on this epic adventure and experience Leicester whilst sitting back, relaxing and enjoying your unique rickshaw journey.
W: indiansummer.org.uk

Night of Festivals South Asia
Monday 14 – Saturday 19 August
City Centre and neighbourhood locations

Night of Festivals South Asia is a cultural celebration to mark the 70th anniversary of Indian and Pakistan Independence. The festival will present live music, visual arts, dance, street arts, film and participatory activity in the city centre and local neighbourhoods across a six day event, celebrating the rich mix and vibrancy of different
South Asian cultures and contemporary art.
W: nightoffestivals.com

City Festival: Outdoor Cinema
Friday 18 August, 8.30pm
Jubilee Square

An Indian Summer will be partnering with Night of Festivals South Asia to showcase another spectacular outdoor cinema screening: Lion. Bring chairs, a picnic blanket and some popcorn!
W: indiansummer.org.uk

The King City Blues Festival
Friday 18 – Sunday 20 August
Blues & Brews Trail

Celebrating Leicester’s thriving live blues and roots music scene and showcasing world class real ale from local brewers. Electric and acoustic live blues at participating venues throughout the city; The Criterion, Brood, The Hind, The Donkey and headline acts at The Musician.
W: thedonkeybar.com / themusicianpub.co.uk

Leicester Belgrave Mela Festival
Sunday 20 August, 11am – 6pm
Gallowtree Gate, Clock Tower, Humberstone Gate & Leicester Market

Star Plus and Leicester Belgrave Mela invite you to a day of scintillating entertainment, street performances, mouth-watering cuisine and dazzling arts and Indian culture. Enjoy a host of South Asian arts and cultural experiences andspot a bargain in the UK’s biggest shopping bazaar. Come and be amazed by the circus tricks
and performances by ‘The Rajasthan Heritage Brass Band’, all the way from Jaipur India.
W: leicester-mela.co.uk

City Streets
Wednesday 23 – Saturday 26 August
City Wide

A six day street art festival featuring unique performances from local, national and international artists with plenty of interactive activities. Free and great for all of the family.


The Big Weekend
Friday 25 – Monday 28 August
Various city centre locations

Featuring a taste of some of the best bits of the annual Leicester Comedy Festival which will be celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2018.
W: big-weekend.com

Journeys Festival International
Saturday 26 – Sunday 27 August, 11am – 6pm
Jubilee Square

Celebrating the creative talents of exceptional refugee and asylum seeker artists, sharing refugee experiences through great art and culture. With influences from around the world including a world music stage, performance, street food vendors and hands-on creative workshops.
W: journeysfestival.com

Old Town Festival
Monday 28 August
Jubilee Square

Historical-themed fun activities and workshops for all the family, all in the Old Town area. Throughout the festival, jesters and jugglers will entertain along with maypole dancing, storytellers and lots of children’s activities in the colourful medieval tents around the square.

Need further information?

Pop in or call us at Visit Leicester to find out how we can help you enjoy the City Festival even more, see Visit Leicester.

For information on getting to events visit plan your trip to Leicester. We also recommend choosehowyoumove for information on and travel advice.

The City Festival is organised by Leicester City Council. For information regarding the organisation of the festival email festivals@leicester.gov.uk or telephone 0116 454 3600.

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> View Leicestershire TV's video featuring highlights of the City Festival 2014