Bedford River Festival 2018

5 June 2018, 11:27 | Updated: 5 June 2018, 12:32

Bedford River Festival 2018

2018’s Bedford River Festival will be bigger than ever before, with the Festival expanding further down the River to include St Marys’ Gardens where there will be a stage, an arts and crafts marquee as well as a marquee for The Higgins Bedford (Art Gallery & Museum). There will also be giant games and circus skills area, as well as an Adventure Village with a low rope course, bushcraft activities, and canoe trail.

Heart will also be there, along the Embankment with our giant digi-screen and Heart Angels!

This year the River Festival marks its 40th anniversary on Saturday 14th and Sunday 15th July, and is recognised as one of the largest outdoor events of its kind in the UK with the last Festival in 2016 seeing over a quarter of a million people enjoying this free Festival on Bedford’s Embankment.

As well as this all new area, many of the old favourites are back for this year’s Festival with the Carnival Parade, the Dragonboat and Raft races, the boat parade, music, a wide selection of food and drink, and Saturday night’s fireworks display.


Bedford River Festival 2008


Traffic, Travel and Parking 

Park & Ride operates from Elstow. Operating hours are 11am to 10pm on Saturday 14th July (there will additional buses after reworks) and 11am to 9pm on Sunday 15th July. Car parking is available at Bedford International Athletic Stadium and Bedford Borough Council car parks. Bedford Borough Council Town Centre multi-storey car parks - 10 minute walk from the Festival Site.

Bedford St. John’s Station - 10 minute walk from the Festival Site, St Mary’s Gardens. Services on the Marston Vale Line from Bletchley. Bedford Station - 15 minute walk from the Festival Site. Services from London, Flitwick, Luton, St. Albans, Wellingborough & more. Please visit for more information

The River Taxi will also run on Saturday, departing from the Suspension Bridge hourly from 11am until 5pm and arriving at Sovereigns Quay half-an-hour later. On Sunday it will run hourly at 11am, 12pm and 1pm then again at 4.30pm, 5.30pm and 6.30pm. Adults £4, OAP and under 16 £2, under 4s, free. 


Bedford River Festival Map 2018


The event schedule is as follows... 


Bedford River Festival Events 2018