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Town Festivals & Events

Abingdon-on-Thames has a lively community life. Day, weekend and week long festivals are held throughout the year. Individuals and town societies contribute to the calendar with support from the town administration.
January New Years Day walks, March Abingdon Model Railway Show, Fairtrade Fortnight, Abingdon Science Festival, April Head of the River Race, Freewheeling Cycling Festival, Festival of the Thames with some of the D Day small ships, St George's Day MG and Scouting events, This year on 1st May there will be a May Day event in the abbey grounds very ealy morning. First weekend in May Abingdon Music Festival has classes for all types of instruments and the chance to hear a variety of musical soloists and ensembles. Abingdon Air and Country Show, Bank Holiday walks.
June see the diary for Fun in the Park, Music in the Park and a historic Mock Mayor Day, Food and Drink Festival. Sports events include national competitions at Tilsley Park and all our river based regattas.

Being near to world-leading scientific research has its benefits for arts, science and sports locally.

Unicorn Theatre popular for music and drama and cinema all year round, in June there is the Festival of One-Act Plays  July and August events in the Market Place and on the Thames add to the richness of life.

Dragon Boats Day and Heritage Open properties and guided walks are features of September in Abingdon-on-Thames.

Abingdon Michaelmas Fair and the Runaway Fair are in early October. Abingdon Marathon is in the Events diary third Sunday in October.

The town makes a lot of the winter festive season with craft and gift fairs, a Christmas Exravaganza Day, Santa and his sleigh touring the town, Abingdon Mummers have a good following on a town tour and local villages tour. MG have their famous Boxing Day rally and cars come for the run into the countryside with enthusiasts from all parts of the world.

Our guide to the main festival-type events in our town calendar is currently being added to so let us know if you feel there is a well-established town event that is missing or add it by going to Submit an Event.

Abingdon-on-Thames Town Council provide the Christmas Lights display in the town centre. A large Christmas tree is erected by staff with contrubution from loyal Monday Charter Market traders. Abingdon-on-Thames Chamber of Commerce then undertake a lot of the organisation of a Christmas Extravaganza  to celebrate the switching on of the lights. A traditional parade takes place at midday with live...
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Newest among the annual events in the Abingdon-on-Thames town calendar, the ATOM! Science Festival, usually in March, celebrates the concentration of scientific companies and organisations in the surrounding area, as well as encouraging young people to think positively about scientific subject choices and careers. For details of this year's event see
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Sunday 14th April 2019. The Spring Rides Cycling Festival welcomes everyone. It is put on by the Freewheeling Cycling Club. This is an April fixture which always seems to catch the first days of perfect springtime weather. The group’s ethos is to encourage all ages, abilities and people to have a go at cycling, or expand their horizons if they already cycle a little. They offer a day full of...
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Dragon Boating on the River Thames
Dragon Boat Day is a long-established, annual charity fund raising event held on and alongside the River Thames in Abingdon-on-Thames. Organisers are The Rotary Club of Abingdon Vesper's with support from members of Abingdon Lions Club and other locals. The Dragon Boat races start mid-morning and continue throughout the day, finishing late afternoon all depending on weather and current on this...
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Heritage Open is mainly in September nationwide and in other parts of Europe. Due to its popularity some towns and heritage locations are varying or increasing the length of their period of special events. In 2019 the town's highly experienced civic society Friends of Abingdon will be co ordinating events. This society is open to anyone who loves Abingdon and its heritage.   Heritage Open makes a...
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