Book your Dorset bed and breakfast stay securely and directly with us for the best price, delicious breakfasts and lots of little free extras – check availability here. Our online calendar is always up to date.

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To help you plan your bed and breakfast trip to Gillingham, Dorset,  here’s a regularly updated listing of events and activities that you might like to see and do.  These are just some of the things that we know people enjoy in the area – but also take a look at the Visit Dorset website for a few extra ideas. Additionally, local attractions such as Monkey World, the Haynes Motor Museum, Longleat and Tank World run events – visit their websites for dates and activities,  then check our online booking system and make your reservation.

We are proud to support the work of the Music at Gillingham Methodist Church programme (and often host the performers) – details of how to buy tickets for the concerts listed during their 2018 season can be found at the M@GMC website (here).

As we are so close to the borders of Somerset and Wiltshire, we’ve also included a few things which happen there!

Please make your bed and breakfast booking in good time if you are particularly keen to attend one of these events or to spend time in Dorset during the summer/over the school half terms and main holiday periods.

Look out for:


Saturday 6th January: Shaftesbury Farmers’ Market


Friday 9th February, for a week: half-term school holidays, England and Wales wp-1482945092970.jpg(variable, based on county)

Tuesday 13th and Wednesday 14th February: Valentine’s Day. Treat yourself to a mid week overnight stay, with a delicious Special Breakfast, free Prosecco and a dip in the hot tub. Click to book!

Mid February: Shaftesbury Snowdrop Festival

Saturday 24th February, 7.30pm: Choir Concert: Brahms – German Requiem – at Gillingham Methodist Church


Saturday 10th March: Beth Nielsen Chapman performs as part of GillFest 2018 in concert at Gillingham School

Saturday 17th – Sunday 18th March: The West of England Game Fair (at Shepton Mallet)

Friday 23rd March, 7.30pm: Choir Concert: Castle Cary Choir – at Gillingham Methodist Church

Friday 30th March: Easter Egg Hunt at Stourhead (also on other dates, see the NT website for details)

Friday 30th March – Monday 2nd April: Easter weekend (UK public holidays on Friday and Monday)


c. 30th March – 15th April: school holidays, England and Wales (variable, based on county)

Friday 20th April, 7.30pm: Piano Recital by Duncan Honeybourne – at Gillingham Methodist Church


Saturday 5th May: The Dorset Venison Festival

Sunday 6th May: North Dorset Village Marathon and Relay

Monday 7th May: May Day public holiday

Monday 7th May: Blandford Georgian Fayre (Blandford Forum)

Sunday 13th May: Shaftesbury Food Festival

Saturday 19th May, 2.00pm: DVD screening – “The Best of Fugue State Films” – at Gillingham Methodist Church

Sunday 20th May: The North Dorset Cycle Ride – three routes, all departing from Park Walk, Shaftesbury.

Monday 28th May: Whit Monday public holiday; Sherborne Castle Country Fair

c. 25th May for a week: half-term school holidays, England and Wales (variable, based on county)

Wednesday 30th May – Saturday 2nd June: Royal Bath & West Show (at Shepton Mallet)


Thursday 31st May – Sunday 3rd June: Colourfest  (at Wimborne; stay with us if you don’t fancy camping!)

Friday 8th – Sunday 10th June: The Wimborne Minster Folk Festival 

Gillinghm Town Meadow
Gillingham Town Meadow, Dorset

Saturday 16th June, 7.30pm: Organ Recital: Hans Hielscher – at Gillingham Methodist Church

Saturday 16th June: Picnic in the Park – An Evening of Musicals presented by Woodside Music, 7.30pm at the Bush Farm Bison Centre, West Knoyle (BA12 6AE). 

Thursday 21st June: Summer Solstice Vintage Vehicle Gathering, at the Gillingham & Shaftesbury Showground (SP7 9PL). 3.00 pm to 10.00pm.

Monday 25th June – Sunday 1st July: The Chalke Valley History Festival 

Friday 29th June – Sunday 1st July: TankFest 2018 (at Bovingdon)

Friday 29th June – Sunday 1st July: Shaftesbury Fringe Festival

Friday 29th June – Sunday 8th July: Gillingham’s Community Festival – GillFest 2018 (various venues in Gillingham – tickets now AVAILABLE for acts including Ralph McTell, Ren Harvieu and Arthur Smith)


Saturday 1st July: Gold Hill Fair, Shaftesbury

Saturday 14th July: Tisbury Summer Music Festival wp-1523996118771..jpg

Sunday 15th July: Classics at the Castle at Sherborne Castle – 1000+ classic/vintage cars on display

c. 26th July – 2nd September: school holidays, England and Wales (variable, based on county)

Friday 27th to Sunday 29th July: Bridport Folk Festival


Saturday 4th August: Dorset Food & Arts Festival, Poundbury

Sunday 5th August, 3.00pm: Organ Recital: Adam Parish – at Gillingham Methodist Church

Wednesday 15th August: The Gillingham and Shaftesbury Show

Sunday 19th August, 3.00pm: Organ Recital: Peter Lattimer – at Gillingham Methodist Church

Thursday 23rd – Monday 27th August: The Great Dorset Steam Fair

Monday 27th August: Bank Holiday Monday (public holiday) 

Thursday 30th August – Sunday 2nd September: End of the Road Festival, Larmer Tree Gardens

Friday 31st August: Walking Festival Quiz Night – held at The Olive Bowl, Gillingham.


Saturday 1st September – Sunday 9th September: The Gillingham Walking Festival

Saturday 1st/Sunday 2nd September: The Dorset County Show (held at the Showground in Dorchester)

Saturday 1st September: The Bridport Hat Festival

Sunday 2nd September, 3.00pm: Organ Recital: Duncan Honeybourne – at Gillingham Methodist Church

Say cheese!

Saturday 8th – Sunday 9th September: The Sturminster Newton Cheese Festival

Friday 14th – Sunday 23rd September: The 2018 return of the Inside Out Dorset Festival 

Sunday 16th September, 3.00pm: Organ Recital: Paul Goodman – at Gillingham Methodist Church

Sunday 23rd September: The Wessex Heavy Horse Society Annual Show, held at the Gillingham and Shaftesbury Showground

Saturday 29th September: Shaftesbury Carnival

Sunday 30th September, 3.00pm: Organ Recital: Tobias Rihm – at Gillingham Methodist Church


Saturday 6th October: Gillingham Carnival and Parade

Wednesday 10th October, 7.30pm: Sound the Trumpets Again! In concert with Professor Ian Tracey (Liverpool Cathedral) and Crispian Steele-Perkins – at Gillingham Methodist Church

Saturday 13th October: Wimborne Minster Food & Drink Festival

c. 19th October, for a week: half-term school holidays, England and Wales (variable, based on county)


Saturday 4th November: Shaftesbury & Gillingham Round Table’s Fireworks Display at the North Dorset Rugby Club, Gillingham


Christmas at Stourhead

Stourhead House decorated in Victorian Christmas style. 

Monday 3rd December: Christmas Spectacular and Late Night Shopping, Shaftesbury (6-9pm) [TBC]

Sunday 16th December: Dorset’s largest Christmas street market, Shaftesbury [TBC]


Other Christmas events to be added nearer to December 2018.







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