BASINGSTOKE Festival returns on Friday, June 21 with three weekends of performances in the town centre and around the borough to kick-off the summer.

Running until Sunday, July 7, the festival will give residents and visitors the chance to experience an array of street theatre, outdoor arts, circus, dance and music.

Produced by Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council and now in its 13th year, the festival will celebrates everything that makes Basingstoke and Deane special, including heritage, arts, culture, community and the audiences that watch and get involved.

This year, Basingstoke Festival will be going out and about to bring joy to even more people with performances and activities taking place in a number of communities across the borough each Sunday, complementing the shows in Basingstoke town centre on Saturdays. Many performances have minimal speech or are speech-free, but Saturday performances with spoken words will be British Sign Language interpreted as well.

READ MORE: PHOTOS: Wet weather and smiling faces at Old Basing and Lychpit Carnival

Basingstoke Festival acts in action (Image: Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council) The opening parade will kick the festival off in style on Friday, June 21. Produced by local carnival and street artist Sarah Thomas-Lane, the parade will see a host of colourful performers, community organisations, charities, schools and colleges join forces and take the audience back in time to the Basingstoke of the past.

During the opening weekend on Saturday 22 and Sunday, June 23, audiences can enjoy neolithic exploration and dynamic Parkour moves in Henge by internationally acclaimed Motionhouse. Risky Business!, a circus street show, will bring juggling, a unicycle and plenty of banter courtesy of Covent Garden stars from Fit Up Productions.

Other first weekend acts not to be missed include Tape That by Hands Down Circus, where an acrobatic duet explores how many problems can be solved with a few rolls of duct tape, and local artist Sarah Thomas-Lane’s Time Travellers’ Trail, navigating the twists and turns of time.

Audience favourites Jellyfish Theatre will return with more storytelling fun in The Dragon Wagon and dancers will explore the passing of time on a seven-metre-tall rotating hourglass in Timeless by Joli Vyan.

SEE ALSO: 27 pictures and video from Basingstoke Festival Parade

Scratchbuilt Productions will also return, bringing science to life and encouraging the next generation of Basingstoke scientists as part of The Bonkers Balloon Science Show.

And visitors to Festival Place can try their hand at creative virtual reality and esports with ESG Gaming in the Festival Hub, next to the Apple Store.

The council’s arts and culture manager Ross Harvie said: “Basingstoke Festival showcases the best local and national artists and champions work created specifically for new audiences.

“It is a great opportunity for residents to explore arts and culture by enjoying music, dance, visual art and street theatre performances. We want everyone to be able to enjoy the arts, so we are pleased to be able to bring more performances to local communities across the borough this year, so look out for acts near you.

“Keep an eye on the Basingstoke Festival website and social media for more information on the packed programme.”

This year the festival is working in partnership with Village Hotel Basingstoke. The Festival Hub is also returning, in partnership with Festival Place. Basingstoke Festival is part of Without Walls, a network of organisations bringing innovative outdoor arts to towns and cities across England. Find out more on Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council is supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England for Basingstoke Festival 2024.

More information on Basingstoke Festival and how to take part is on the website at or @BasingstokeFestival on Facebook and @BstokeFestival on X and Instagram.

The website will be regularly updated as acts, locations and timings are confirmed.