Fringe for Free 2021

We have plenty of free stuff to do at the Fringe, and it's all listed here. For Online events just click in the links within the event description.

All of the shows are listed here.

Note the events below are listed in good faith but will be subject to the government's coronavirus guidelines as they stand in July.

Events marked Family Friendly have been suggested by the entrant as generally suitable for family viewing. Events in the Children's Events category are specifically aimed at young people.

Please note that details of performances, including times and dates, may be subject to Late Changes. Numbers in brackets refer to venue numbers (see map). How to make a Comment.

         Fringe          Children's Events          Comedy          Film          Music          Spoken Word          Street Theatre          Theatre          Visual Arts          And More...

Diary Venue Map


Fringe stalwart Sam Slide (credit: Ian J Parkes)

FRINGE 10 TO 5 - Buxton Fringe Family Friendly
Our traditional Fringe@5 busking showcase becomes Fringe 10am to 5pm as we invite Fringe performers past and present to entertain us on the promenade by the Pavilion Gardens conservatory near our newly located Fringe Information Desk. Just sign up at the Desk (open every day from 10am to 7pm) to book your slot (only minimal amplification permitted - there are no electric sockets).
Pavilion Gardens – Promenade (33q) OpenStreetMap 7-25 Jul 10am to 5pm Free, Donations: Performers may ask for donations - please be generous. Comments

credit: Ian J Parkes

FRINGE AWARDS 2021 - Buxton Fringe Family Friendly
Performers, Fringe Friends, Fringe Committee members and Reviewers are invited to our Fringe Awards Ceremony. Enjoy a drink with us in relaxed, open-air surroundings with a little polytunnel shelter if needs be! We see this as a celebration of everyone who has helped the Fringe go ahead this year. See:
Serpentine Community Garden (107) OpenStreetMap 25 Jul 5pm to 6:30pm Free
Further information: Open to groups stated and by invitation. Comments

credit: Ian J Parkes

FRINGE SUNDAY - Buxton Fringe Family Friendly
Join us for the welcome return of our free, drop-in showcase of Fringe entertainment featuring music, dance, street theatre, comedy, children’s fun and more. Enjoy a picnic and some Derbyshire ice cream, mingle with the stars and tweet away - #FringeSunday. Note this event will be subject to Covid regulations in July.
Pavilion Gardens – Bandstand (33a) OpenStreetMap 11 Jul 2pm to 4:30pm Free

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         Fringe          Children's Events          Comedy          Film          Music          Spoken Word          Street Theatre          Theatre          Visual Arts          And More...

 Children's Events

a crown, a castle and a flower for adventures

TINY!: MOUSE QUEENS AND MOLE KINGS - Stone and Water Family Friendly
Join us in the Gardens for some gentle, laughful creativity. Making Mouse Queens, Mole Kings, Ladybird Princesses or Beetle Knights and the miniature castles they call home, we'll create worlds of fabulous characters and send you off to tell your own wondertales. Materials provided. Please bring a smile.
Pavilion Gardens – Playground (33m) OpenStreetMap 11 Jul 11am to 3pm Free, Ages 3+ Review Comments

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         Fringe          Children's Events          Comedy          Film          Music          Spoken Word          Street Theatre          Theatre          Visual Arts          And More...


The self-proclaimed No 1 poetry teacher in the UK returns with a mini masterclass, before performing a new genre combining poetry, storytelling and theatre. Annus Horribilis, Anus Horribilis (Horrible Year, Horrible Bottom) is considered to be vulgar and deluded but the sincerity of Gilbert cannot be doubted. (New Writing)
Green Man Gallery – Workshop Room (86b) OpenStreetMap 8, 9 Jul 6pm to 7pm, 10, 11 Jul noon to 1pm Free, Strong language and adult themes, Ages 16+ Review
Further information: the Gallery, 01298 937375 or Comments(1)

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         Fringe          Children's Events          Comedy          Film          Music          Spoken Word          Street Theatre          Theatre          Visual Arts          And More...


SNAPSHOT STORIES - Naomi Paul Family Friendly
Join Naomi Paul and Meon Vale residents in their collaborative film Snapshot Stories. This was part of Live & Local’s LivingRoom project, launched in summer 2020 in response to the pandemic. The film is a celebration of community and nature and played a part in the community’s environmental success story. (New Writing)
Online: 7-25 Jul all day Free, Donations: Meon Vale Residents Association via Review Comments(1)

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         Fringe          Children's Events          Comedy          Film          Music          Spoken Word          Street Theatre          Theatre          Visual Arts          And More...


ALWAYS FIND A SONG - Kaleidoscope Choir Family Friendly
Kaleidoscope Choir - a joint Buxton International Festival and Opera House project - have continued singing online through recent difficult times. Now celebrating singing together in person, they show how you can always find a song to lift your spirits. COVID precautions limit audience to first 30 on the door.
Buxton Methodist Church – Church (06a) OpenStreetMap 20 Jul 1pm to 2pm Free, Donations: or cafdonate.cafon Review Comments

Darren Poyzer

DARREN POYZER'S SUNDAY SERVICE - Darren Poyzer Family Friendly
Non award-winning writer of songs no-one knows, performing live in a storeroom, an event that is free because it's hardly likely to sell tickets. Your challenge: sit through the full hour, make do with technical glitches, write something lovely in the comments, buy me a coffee... #letusplay (New Writing)
Online: 11, 18 & 25 Jul 11am to noon Free, Duration: 60 mins, Donations: Please feel free to buy me a coffee: Review
Further information: Social media sharing appreciated: Comments(1)

Guy Stewart Smooth & Mellow Saxophone

Smooth Saxophone played by Guy Stewart, with songs from his latest album Heart To My Soul. A true combination of the sound of a subtle sensual saxophone and a creative mind imbuing musical works with a quiet energy. (New Writing)
Online: For 9th July, for 24th July 9 & 24 Jul 9pm to 10pm Free Review Gallery Comments(2)

back to top Diary Venue Map Follow these links to jump to a Category:

         Fringe          Children's Events          Comedy          Film          Music          Spoken Word          Street Theatre          Theatre          Visual Arts          And More...

 Spoken Word

BUXTON SPOKEN WORDS LIVE! - Buxton Spoken Words Family Friendly
Buxton Spoken Words are proud to offer a reading of Christina Rossetti’s epic poem: Goblin Market. There will also be original poetry performed by local writers from Buxton and the High Peak. This will be a live event with appropriate social distancing. It will also be livestreamed on and also available on YouTube ( from 9th July. (New Writing)
Green Man Gallery – Ground Floor Gallery (86a) OpenStreetMap 8 Jul 7:30pm to 9:30pm. The Pump Room (84) OpenStreetMap 16 Jul 7pm to 9pm Free, Donations: Donations towards our Fringe Festival costs will be gratefully received. Review
Further information: the Gallery, 01298 937375 or Pump Room tickets need reserving via Comments

Claire Finn headshot photographer David Myers

Spoken word films performed and written by Claire Finn. Living Ghost & Voice of the seasons were chosen for the BBC upload festival and aired on BBC Radio Nottingham. Rippled waters is a new piece of writing. (New Writing)
Online: 7-25 Jul all day Free, Six mins 48 secs Review Gallery
Further information: Comments

Writers in the Peak present a cornucopia of writing and raspberry sauce.

Once again Writers in the Peak are returning to the Fringe. Step into the world of twitching curtains, ponderings and the meanderings of others. Peer inside their heads and join us as we explore their thoughts through monologues, poetry and music. (New Writing)
Online: 7-25 Jul all day Free, Strong language, Ages 14+ Review Gallery
Further information: 07497 910930 Comments

credit: Mark Henderson

THE SECRET GARDENS - Chapel Arts Creative Writing Group Family Friendly
Enjoy video performances of stories, prose and poetry written to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Buxton's Pavilion Gardens. Love stories, ghosts, magical fantasies, curious histories, Beatlemania and the further adventures of Fred, Doris and Ethel all feature. See for downloadable PDFs of the works. (New Writing)
Online: 7-25 Jul all day Free Review Gallery Comments

A new addition to your bookshelf!

WHAT IT IS TO BE BLUE - Dreamshed Theatre Family Friendly
Bill Cronshaw's humorous, nostalgic and wistful celebration of a life spent being a Manchester City fan is the basis of this launch of Bill's book 'What it is to be Blue'. (New Writing)
Online: (Link sent after booking) 10 Jul 7pm to 8pm Free, Ages 9+ Review Gallery
Further information: Book via Comments

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         Fringe          Children's Events          Comedy          Film          Music          Spoken Word          Street Theatre          Theatre          Visual Arts          And More...

 Street Theatre

Artwork (c) Mister Hope

THE SHAKESPEARE JUKEBOX - Buxton Drama League Family Friendly
The award-winning Shakespeare Jukebox goes hybrid! Following last year’s online success, a new selection of filmed performances will be posted during the Fringe for you to watch anytime, anywhere. We’ll also be returning for a handful of live performances where you can select your favourite scenes and watch in person.
Pavilion Gardens (33) OpenStreetMap 10, 16, 17 & 23, 24 Jul 6pm to 7pm Free, Online: Review Comments

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         Fringe          Children's Events          Comedy          Film          Music          Spoken Word          Street Theatre          Theatre          Visual Arts          And More...


The Crooked Spire, The Windlass edition.

In 1360, John Carpenter arrives in Chesterfield to build a windlass and erect a new church spire. But the master carpenter is murdered. More death and intrigue follow and John becomes the suspect. Will John find young Walter who has disappeared? And will he be able to clear his name? (New Writing)
Online: 18 Jul from 7:30pm, 19-25 Jul all day Free, BSL Interpreter Review Gallery
Further information: or 07497 910930 Comments

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         Fringe          Children's Events          Comedy          Film          Music          Spoken Word          Street Theatre          Theatre          Visual Arts          And More...

 Visual Arts

ART IN THE WOODS - Buxton Wild Weeks Family Friendly
Join us making Art in the Woods using eco-paper and natural materials. Be inspired by the colours, textures and shapes in the woodland environment. We have sessions running in Sherbrook, Grinlow, Corbar and Gadley. All abilities welcome. Visit to find and book a session.
Corbar Wood (127) OpenStreetMap 8 Jul 1:30pm to 2:30pm. Gadley Wood (128) OpenStreetMap 8 Jul 6:30pm to 7:30pm. Sherbrook Wood (129) OpenStreetMap 9 Jul 1:30pm to 2:30pm. Grinlow Woods – at Poole's Cavern (94) OpenStreetMap 9 Jul 6pm to 7:30pm Free

ART ON THE RAILINGS - Buxton Art Trail
Buxton Art Trail takes to the boulevard! An art exhibition à la Montmartre on Buxton’s beautiful Broad Walk alongside Pavilion Gardens. Come and join local artists showing a wide variety of work.
Pavilion Gardens – Broad Walk (33g) OpenStreetMap 17 Jul 10am to 4:30pm Free, Event postponed 17th due to weather forecast, Donations: Please contact if you would like to donate Review
Further information: Comments

BUXTON PHOTO CHALLENGE 2021 - Chapel Camera Club Family Friendly
Just for fun again this year! Take six photos on six themes in six hours - in the right order. You can use your camera or phone and take them anywhere you like. No judging or prizes this year, but an enjoyable challenge which will sharpen your observation/photography skills.
Online: 10 Jul 10am to 4pm Free Review Comments

The Ghosts of Saturday Night - Alex Kelly - 3rd Prize - The Buxton Spa Art Prize 2019

THE BUXTON SPA PRIZE EXHIBITION 2021 - The Buxton Spa Prize Family Friendly
An exhibition celebrating Buxton and its breathtaking backdrops. View artwork created during the spring and summer of 2021 by over 100 plein air artists from across the United Kingdom. See all the prize-winning entries and vote for your favourite painting in the Buxton Spa Art Prize People’s Choice Award.
Green Man Gallery – Ground Floor Gallery (86a) OpenStreetMap 7-25 Jul 10:30am to 5:30pm Free Review
Further information: the Gallery, 01298 937375 or Comments

Seeing. oil on applied canvas and threads on canvas 100 x 100 cm, by L.Jannetta

CONSIDERED CONSOLIDATION - The Louise Jannetta Gallery & Studio Family Friendly
Contemplation permits a plentiful emptiness where anything can appear without obstructions. And synaesthetic stimulus, haptic, optic, spatial and temporal, without defined parameters, evokes this void with its own profusion. The climate is warm and the time is ripe to take a moment to acknowledge these apparently empty powers.
Louise Jannetta Art Studio (rear of 24 Dale Rd) (14) OpenStreetMap 9, 10, 16, 17 & 23, 24 Jul 10am to 4pm Free Review Gallery
Further information: or 07931 821191 Comments

KEEP IT UNDER YOUR HAT - Mary Gwen Family Friendly
Installation suspended from the ceiling consisting of a modern interpretation of Welsh hats, depicting cultural secrets and identity, sense of place, purpose and belonging in Wales today. Explores themes of dichotomy, fear, heritage, shared knowledge and diversity with an environmentally-aware backdrop. This exhibition has been extended to run until the end of August.
Pavilion Gardens – Foyer (33c) OpenStreetMap 21-25 Jul 9:30am to 5pm Free Review
Further information: Comments

TAKE THE WATER - Nick Charnley Family Friendly
Based in a former nail salon, this new art and design space celebrates the Fringe with a tribute to the local mineral water. Carried daily from the well nearby, the water literally takes centre stage where, in addition to performing a functional role, it acts as a focus for contemplation. Prearranged visits preferred. Book via
The Nail Boudoir (126) OpenStreetMap 7-25 Jul 10am to 4:30pm Free Review
Further information: Comments(1)

An Art Up Close Event

UP HERE SCULPTURE TRAIL - Art Up Close Family Friendly
A discovery of intriguing sculptures and art installations in the trees of Buxton Pavilion Gardens and The Serpentine.
Pavilion Gardens (33) OpenStreetMap 7-25 Jul all day Free, Donations: Review Comments(1)

The Green Man Gallery and Creative Hub

WHERE WE ARE NOW - The Green Man Gallery Artists Family Friendly
The Green Man Gallery's resident artists present a celebration of their art and inspirations. A vibrant exhibition of paintings, drawings, print-making, mixed media, photography, mosaics, ceramics and textiles which also explores the stories, journeys, processes and techniques behind the art. Open every day in the first floor galleries.
Green Man Gallery (86) OpenStreetMap 7 Jul 5:30pm to 8pm, 8-25 Jul 10:30am to 5:30pm Free Review
Further information: the Gallery, 01298 937375 or Comments

Blue light, Brown Edge Woods

The story of winter told through evocative and atmospheric photographs of woodlands, mostly within walking distance of Buxton photographer Geoff Shoults' home. Geoff has won several international awards including Mountain Photo of The Year and The Art of Travel. Other mountain and landscape images on display too.
Jo Royle Outdoor (113) OpenStreetMap 7-17 & 19-24 Jul 10am to 3pm Free Review Gallery Comments

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 And More...

BCA Stronger Roots

BCA STRONGER ROOTS - Buxton Civic Association Stronger Roots Family Friendly
This project aims to bring regeneration and healing to the people and woodlands of Buxton. We are providing a range of FREE workshops and activities throughout Fringe and beyond! Including - Forest bathing 9th; Tree Sketching 10th; Bramble Baskets 11th; Writing Workshop 18th; Woodland Yoga 19th and Nordic Walking 24th. Lots of free activities and workshops are happening throughout the Fringe, please check out the Stronger Roots website for further details and information.
Grinlow Woods – at Poole's Cavern (94) OpenStreetMap 9 Jul 1pm to 3pm Free Gallery
Further information: Comments

Penfold Letterbox

BUXTON LETTERBOX TRAIL - South West Peak Landscape Partnership Family Friendly
Can you tell a Penfold from an Anonymous? Follow our family-friendly trail around the town centre and identify six different letterboxes. Complete the trail and get a souvenir badge and postcard. Pick up a trail map from the Fringe Desk, the Visitor Centre in The Pumproom or The Green Man Gallery.
Around the Town 7-25 Jul all day Free, Some busy roads to cross , Ages 3+ Review Gallery Comments(1)

dress with colour, flare and frivolity....

BUXTON PRIDE PICNIC - Stone and Water Family Friendly
A summer afternoon, fancy hats, wonderful cakes, fabulous people: Buxton’s Pride Picnic is back for its fourth summer feast, a celebration of the town’s LGBTQ+ community. Join us for laughter, conversation, new friends, old tarts… bring your own picnic and maybe bake a cake for our Big Gay Bake Off.
Pavilion Gardens – Swimming Pool Lawns (33n) OpenStreetMap 17 Jul 2pm to 5pm Free

back to top Diary Venue Map Follow these links to jump to a Category:

         Fringe          Children's Events          Comedy          Film          Music          Spoken Word          Street Theatre          Theatre          Visual Arts          And More...