Rainy days out


We’re not saying it’s definitely going to rain all the way through the next school holidays and beyond. Just in case, however, here are some of the best activities to see soggy kids and their grown-ups through the great British autumn and winter.


  • Explore museums, galleries and theatres: As mentioned above, Hull’s museums are havens of fabulous free entertainment all year round. Also check out the Treasure House and Beverley Art Gallery in Beverley, where there are interactive exhibits for young children alongside permanent and touring collections. A round-up of museums, galleries and theatres across Hull and East Yorkshire can be found here. Please note that one of Hull’s two floating museums, the Spurn Lightship, has been temporarily moved and is currently closed for renovation work. Fruit and Kingston Art Group (KAG) are no longer located in Humber Street, but the celebrated artists of Kingston Art Group are currently exhibiting their work at the University of Hull’s Brynmor Jones Library. Their exhibition, We Are Here, runs until Sunday 4 November.

Independent galleries including Humber Street Gallery, Artlink and the Museum of Club Culture in Hull, while Pocklington Arts Centre in Pocklington and The Ropewalk arts and exhibition space in Barton-on-Humber have some incredible exhibitions and regular activities that will appeal to all ages.

  • Rock’n’roll: Here’s a treat day out for children of all ages. John Bull World of Rock is open all year round, with extended opening times during school holidays. Find out how classic seaside rock is made on a self-guided factory tour (tickets: adults £4; over-fours £3, under-fours free), and stop off to roll you own stick of rock filled with a letter of your choice, or make your own chocolate lollipop (£1.50 pp, per activity). There’s also a soft-play area called Candy Kingdom that caters for children aged 0-12. Exit via the factory sweet shop for maximum sugar rush opportunities.
  • Make a splash: When the weather’s awful outside, burn off some energy at the pool. By the coast, Bridlington’s Leisure World has an interactive Splash Zone with two slides, and just outside Hull city centre, Woodford Leisure Centre fits the bill with a wave machine, beach-style pool, slide and more.
  • Prepare for battle: Hull Blast says it is Yorkshire’s first indoor interactive foam dart battle arena. And who are we to argue? Once inside, choose your battle: Apocalyptic Zone; or Space Zone. £10 pp, per hour of play. It’s bound to be a blast and is equally popular with children, students, and groups



  • Bounce, bounce, bounce: Trampoline parks are another indoor play activity that have really taken off and are suitable for all ages. Loads of fun and there are usually SEN and disability-friendly sessions, disco sessions, dodgeball and assault course sessions as well as standard open bounce sessions. If you’re planning to take young children, look out for the cheaper parent-and-toddler, or family activities. An additional, one-off cost for trampoline parks is that you also have to buy branded trampoline socks to be able to bounce. Try: Rebound on Stockholm Road, on the outskirts of Hull, or Gravity in St Stephen’s shopping centre in the heart of the city centre. Prices vary.
  • Don’t forget the old favourites: Soft play zones are probably not most parents’ favourite places to be, but there’s no disputing that younger children love them and they’re brilliant when the weather’s too bad to play in an outdoor park or playground. Hull and East Riding Mumbler’s excellent blog has a comprehensive list of venues all over East Yorkshire.
  • And finally… embrace the muddiness! From an outdoor mud kitchen, to mountains and molehills; sand slide to suspended platform; and amphitheatre to tyre swing, William’s Den is an award-winning outdoor play centre that encourages children to enjoy the great outdoors, rain, mud and all.




Wold Top Cookery School Highfield Farm

Top foodie courses in Hull & East Yorkshire

Love food? Course you do. How would you like to learn a few specialist culinary skills at a homely farmhouse kitchen table, get your bake on surrounded by the scent of freshly risen bread, master the art of the chocolatier, or go back to basics on an organic vegetable plot?

Hull and East Yorkshire’s food producers and providers are tapping into our increasing demands to know where our food comes from, how it’s grown and how it’s made. And there’s an impressive range of experts offering a mouth-watering range of truly memorable foodie experiences in our region, from classes that make an unusual gift idea to children’s parties and even hen and stag events.

East Yorkshire Local Food Network brings producers, makers, cafes and restaurateurs together to help spread the word about great East Yorkshire produce. Spokesperson for the network Julia Soukup says: “For generations, the wonderful and varied landscape of East Yorkshire and the surrounding area has produced some of the finest foods in England. This is still true today and it reflects the passion and skills of the people and businesses that produce it. Our members are small businesses driven by a passion to create superb food and drink to be enjoyed by others – whether that’s in the city, villages or historic market towns set in wonderful countryside, or along our stunning heritage coast.”

On the edge of the stunning Yorkshire Wolds, Side Oven Bakery at Carr House Farm, near Driffield, offers baking classes for all occasions – and all ages – using flour that’s been grown on the organic farm, milled on site and finished in the bakery.

If you take a Side Oven class, there’s a good chance you’ll get a bespoke tour of the flour mill while you’re waiting for your bread to rise, or spend a little time wildlife spotting on the riverside farm, which works closely with Yorkshire Wildlife Trust to preserve the natural environment. You’re your eyes peeled – herons, brown owls, otters, trout, egrets and cormorants have all been spotted here.

Jess Sellers, of Side Oven Bakery says: “We run classes, open days and nature trails all year round, it’s all very relaxed, friendly and fun … It’s all about getting members of the public to farms to see how it all works. We run breadmaking classes for all occasions – children’s make-your-own pizza parties, hen or stag dos, breadmaking for beginners and seasonal bakes. In December, our bakers can come and learn how to make stolen, croissants and sweet buns – we can also run this course in conjunction with another local business, Rosebud Flowers, so people can choose to bake stollen in the morning and make Christmas wreaths in the afternoon. In summer, we run a picnic breads course. At lunchtime we all eat together and, of course, our bakers get to take home a big basket full of breads home with them.

“Everything we do is rooted on our farm and rooted in our products, so we have seasonal open days for apples in October, a blackcurrant-picking day in July and an elderflower festival – what we’re trying to demonstrate is how to make best use of what’s out there.”

For more details of foodie experiences and cooking courses, check out the businesses in the East Yorkshire Local Food Network. In the meantime, here are a few more to tickle your tastebuds:


Yorkshire Wolds Cookery School has the largest range of cookery courses in the region and it’s the go-to place to learn everything from street food cookery to classic patisserie; Lebanese or Thai to a Yorkshire Born and Bred course. It’s also unusual in offering B&B accommodation – either as a package alongside cookery courses, or separately. Basically, pick a skill, learn it, eat it and, if you fancy, stay over in a beautiful setting that’s surrounded by beautiful private farmland. Yorkshire Wolds Cookery School has four resident chefs leading classes, and also brings in guest chefs such as James McKenzie from nearby Michelin-starred restaurant, or Great British Menu chef Stephanie Moon.

Yorkshire produce reigns here, with typical ingredients including Staal Smokehouse smoked salmon, dairy from St Quintin’s Creamery, Lowna Dairy for goat’s cheese, Pocklington butchers Burton’s and Skipsea-based fishmonger Frank Powell.

Business development manager for the school Alison Johnson says: “People come from far and wide, simply because they can stay over – we can take up to 18 people for a cook-and-dine experience. We also offer private dining, as well as children’s and family classes such as junior baking and young masterchef.”




Cocoa Chocolatier in Humber Street at the heart of Hull’s attractive Fruit Market area offers the chance to learn the basics of chocolate making with this fun, informative, one-hour class. You’ll learn how to temper chocolate to get that perfect sheen, make your own ganache filling and, best of all, get to take your creations – a dozen filled chocolates, a chocolate bar, chocolate thins and a lollipop home with you. Caters for parties for chocoholics of all ages.


Does milk get any fresher than this? Help yourself to a pinta from Cherry View Milk’s unusual milk vending machine and show the kids exactly where their milk comes from with a trip to this small, but busy, dairy farm. The Milk Shed in Cherry Burton is open from 7am to 7pm daily – just pop up the farm’s driveway and fill up your milk bottles. Becky Waring, of Cherry View Milk, says: “As we are a working dairy farm, customers get to experience the activities on the farm when they are here filling their milk bottles from the specialist milk vending machine. On a daily basis this can include watching calves being fed, seeing the cows queueing in the field to come in for milking time and this week customers even looked on as a cow gave birth to a baby calf in the field. Our youngest customers also love to see the tractors working around the farmyard.”




If you’re prepared to get stuck in, Arthur’s Organics in Rise, near Hornsea, welcomes visitors to its walled garden every Monday and Wednesday. Find out where your food comes from by having a go at planting, harvesting, weeding or similar in exchange for fresh, organic veg. The organisers say: “It’s a tranquil, lovely space. We are Soil Association certified and we don’t use chemical pesticides – it’s all totally natural and healthy. As well as being a wonderful exchange of energy, the work is calming, friendly and fun.”

Similarly, Frith Farm in Molescroft, near Beverley, welcomes all-comers for seasonal volunteering opportunities on Wednesdays, between 10am and 1pm. Get in touch with the farm to check details before setting off.


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Hull Fair

Your guide to Hull Fair 2018

Whether you’re a seasoned fairgoer or will be visiting for the first time, we’ve put together this handy guide to make sure you don’t miss out on all the fun of Hull Fair.

Hull Fair. Photo: © Josh Moore


Beautifully painted classic fairground attractions sit alongside thrilling white-knuckle rides in a wonderful clash of old and new.

Thrill-seekers will want to try the star riders, a high tower that sees passengers ascend above the lights of the fair.

Some other favourites include: the Reverse Bungee, where riders are catapulted skyward with only a couple of ropes and a small cage for protection; Tagada, which invites you to cling on to your seat for dear life as you are violently spun and shaken; the giggle-inducing bounce-fest that is Crazy Frog and the Bomber, which sees riders dangling precariously on the end of a rotating arm as it soars through the air.

Classic thrills come in the form of a lavish carousel, spooky ghost trains, fun houses, dodgems and a helter skelter, while a trip on the towering Big Wheel will provide stunning views across the city.

And who could forget the waltzers? Cram a couple of your pals into a car and scream if you want to go faster!

TIP: Plenty of the rides operate ‘happy hours’ throughout the evening, so keep your eyes peeled for reduced ticket prices.


Hull Fair. Photo: © Josh Moore


For those of us who can’t face being hurled through the air at breathtaking speeds, Walton Street is where Hull Fair really comes alive. Lined with every food stall imaginable, set aside a good hour to make your way through the deliciously tempting aromas of Bob Carver’s patty and chips, steaming hot burgers with fried onions, bratwurst sausages, gravy-soaked Hull Pies and chips doused in chip spice.

Those with a sweet tooth will be in their element, with stall after stall serving up fresh sugar doughnuts, hot chocolate, sticky toffee apples, bags of candyfloss and cinder toffee, not forgetting the famous Wright’s Brandy Snap (you can get it all year round, but it’s never quite the same).

And remember to grab a paper bag from the cart filled with roasted chestnuts if you’re heading out via Spring Bank West – you won’t regret it!

TIP: Don’t settle for the first stall you see – there is a huge variety along the entire street.


Hull Fair. Photo: © Josh Moore


If you like a challenge, then you’ll love the selection of fairground games on offer, from hook-a-duck to darts, penalty shoot outs, bingo, shooting ranges, strength testers and coconut shies. And there are prizes to be won if you’re lucky, from children’s toys to novelty cushions and stuffed toy animals.

A trip to Hull Fair wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the famous Rosa Lee in her mysterious caravan to have your palms read and discover what your future holds.

TIP: Leave the fairground games until last – nobody wants to be that person sharing a waltzer car with a 4ft stuffed toy animal!

Hull Fair takes place at Walton Street car park from Fri 5 to Sat 13 Oct and is open every day until 11pm, except for Sun 7 Oct, when the fair will be closed. Entry to the fair is free, with fairground rides and stalls priced individually. For bus travel information about getting to Hull Fair, visit eyms.co.uk

Photo at Where Are We Now? festival

HIP Goes POP – Hull International Photography Festival

Hull International Photography Festival #HIPfest takes over Princes Quay Shopping Centre for a 5th year. New for 2018; successful London show PhotoCity and partners Fujiholics bring fresh excitement to the opening weekend. HIPfest opens at 6.30 on the evening of Friday October 5th with a packed weekend programme. Exhibitions will stay until 28th. 12 exhibitions by award-winning visiting photographers & outstanding local talent, and 50 other events including masterclasses, photo-walks, discussions and a photography trade-show.

Festival highlights include: The POP Exhibition by legendary photographer Brian Griffin, a masterclass by Youtuber sensation Sean Tucker in Hull Minster, the moving “Stranger In My Mother’s Kitchen” exhibition by Celine Marchbank, 50’s Paris fashion and more from the Marilyn Stafford collection, #PhotoCity trade-show & exhibition, ‘A1 Britain On The Verge’ by World Press Award-winning patron Peter Dench and so much more.

This ambitious festival is organised by volunteers from the local, independent arts organisation, Creative & Cultural Company,curated by Alan Raw and will take place in and around the HIP Gallery in Princes Quay Shopping Centre, Hull Minster & Kardomah94. It also includes opportunities for photographers of all ages and levels to participate in a programme of workshops, photowalks and portfolio reviews. After Hull curator Alan Raw successfully curated PhotoCity London last year, he is now able to bring the PhotoCity tradeshow and all-star exhibition to Hull, along with a fabulous program of master classes from PhotoCity partners Fujiholics.

Alan Raw Curator & Festival Director said:

“In just five years, HIP Fest has established its credentials as one of the most significant photography events in Europe, thanks to the fabulous volunteers from Creative & Cultural. We have all worked hard to put together a stunning celebration of photography for 2018. I am particularly looking forward to welcoming Celine Marchbank and Marilyn Stafford to HIP Fest for the first time. There will be something for everyone and plenty to learn, do and enjoy.”

This year HIP FEST supports Care International’s Lendwithcare Campaign and will have an exhibition from 5 international women photographers to raise awareness.

A £5 entry ticket (wristband) gives you access to all exhibitions, discussions, the HIPfest Prize Draw, discounts on site, some great learning opportunities and the ability to purchase workshop & masterclass tickets. This is down from £15 last year. Premier workshops, master-classes and portfolio reviews require individual additional tickets available on Eventbrite.

Back to Ours – October Half Term

If you’re looking for something for the whole family this October half-term, look no further than Back to Ours festival; from Nanas to newborns, there’s something for everyone.

Avant Garde Dance will be taking over Wilberforce Sixth Form College with their edgy hip-hop reworking of the Dickens classic, Oliver Twist. Coming to the Festival as part of their acclaimed UK autumn tour, the Fagin’s Twist is the untold story of the notorious, complex, and maybe even misunderstood villain. In his world, the streets are harsh and there’s no such thing as a fairy tale ending…

Renown for pushing the boundaries of Hip Hop contemporary dance, Tony Adigun’s dynamic choreography uses dance from the streets to bring this very familiar story a whole new edge.

For the first time the festival brings not one, but two Secret Gigs to tickle funny bones – as always, it’s all top secret, but laughs, surprises and a sprinkle of Back to Ours mischief guaranteed. Previous names to grace the Secret Gig stage have included the Faaaaaaabulous Ceri Dupree, and most recently, the legendary Jimmy Cricket. Grab your tickets quickly, and you might just strike comedy gold.

Britpop legends Rick Witter and Paul Banks will also be performing an acoustic Shed Seven set at North Point Shopping Centre, continuing the ever-popular sell-out live music gigs that have become a mainstay of the festival. Playing an intimate set of all their iconic hits, it’ll be another packed night with enough sing-along anthems to make your throat sore.

The festival also welcomes back Milk Presents, the company who brought Joan to Back to Ours last February.  

 Based on the Greek myth of Theseus and the Minotaur, join a group of dreamers and rebels hoping to blag, pass and gamble their way out of the Labyrinth where the Minotaur lives. When Theseus arrives, determined to kill the creature against all odds, will he succeed? And at what cost? A story about power, love, and not taming the beast within, this show drops a proverbial bull into a china shop and hopes to break everything.

For younger children, leading Polish company Teatr Atofri will be performing the UK premiere of Mr. Satie, an enchanting interactive performance where magical things can happen. Set in a world of paper, imaginations soar as things aren’t quite what they first appear to be.

Hull’s own The Herd Theatre will be performing Slime, getting little hands dirty with the story of two unlikely friends. When Slog the Slug is the only one who can help, will Coco the caterpillar realise that having a slug for a friend isn’t so bad after all?

There’ll also be a stay and play session afterwards, where little hands can get stuck into some VERY squelchy slime.

And if this doesn’t tickle your bare necessities, Kipling classic Jungle Book will be brought to life in an all-singing, all-dancing stage version of the classic story from Gary Starr productions.

Join Mowgli, Bagheera and Baloo through the epic story of survival through the jungle – will they manage to stay safe from the cunning Shere Khan?

Whatever you choose to see, you can look forward to friendly faces, Snack to Ours providing refreshments to enjoy with your show, and the usual dose of Back to Ours, sparkle, mayhem and fun.

Tickets are available from backtoours.co.uk from Saturday 22 October, and half of ALL tickets will be kept back to buy in person from The Pod, Paragon Interchange, on Saturday 6 and 20 October. Cash and card accepted.

Shakespeare, , Writer - William Shakespeare, Director - Jonathan Munby, Designer - Paul Wills, Lighting Oliver Fenwick, The Duke Of Yorks Theatre, 2018, Credit: Johan Persson/

How live screenings can take us to the heart of UK Theatreland…

Wouldn’t that be marvellous? And also rather spooky, in a Dr Who/Harry Potter kind of way.

While we wait for a teleportation machine to turn up, Hull Truck Theatre is bringing us the next best thing this September. A series of screenings, courtesy of the National Theatre Live initiative, will present the current crème de la crème of British theatre, direct from London, to local audiences.

The screenings promise all of the wonder of live West End theatre, minus the travel and eye-watering costs of a London visit. And the best seats in the house, no less.

The first screening, Julie, is a new version of August Strinberg’s Miss Julie, which examines class tensions. Featuring The Crown’s Vanessa Kirby as the eponymous lead and written by Polly Stenham, Julie will be broadcast from the National Theatre on 26 September. [Web link: https://www.hulltruck.co.uk/whats-on/hull-truck-screen/nt-live-julie-15/]

The second, King Lear, stars the iconic, inimitable Sir Ian McKellen in his final Shakespearean theatre role. [Web link: https://www.hulltruck.co.uk/whats-on/hull-truck-screen/nt-live-king-lear-12a/]

McKellen’s performance in Chichester Festival Theatre’s five-star production is being hailed as ‘spellbinding’ and ‘magnificent’. King Lear will be broadcast live from the Duke of York’s Theatre on 27 September.

The NT Live screenings are part of ‘Hull Truck Screen’ programme, which also features film classics such as Pandora’s Box. [Web link: https://www.hulltruck.co.uk/whats-on/hull-truck-screen/yorkshire-silents-pandoras-box-pg/]

It all sounds like magic to me.



Hull Truck Screen Programme this September:

Pandora’s Box (1929), with live piano accompaniment. Friday 21 September, 7pm. Tickets £12 standard / £11 Hull Independent Cinema members / £10 students and under 25s

Julie, NT Live. Wednesday 26 September, 7pm. Tickets £14 (£12 concessions)

King Lear, NT Live. Thursday 27 September, 7pm. Tickets £14 (£12 concessions)

My visit to The Deep

I am doing a three week placement in three different departments of the Hull City Council. Actually I am living in Earlsmere guesthouse with one other student who is also working in the Hull City Council. After almost two weeks in Hull, I can say that a placement abroad is a very good experience. I learned a lot about the life in England and Hull.

My first impressions were that Hull is a very interesting city with a lot of history. Hull got a lot of museums and sights. I would like to go into more details about an attraction called The Deep. I have visited it by myself and it is very impressive. The Deep is an award winning aquarium with over 3500 fish, sharks, stunning marine life and plenty of activities. You can have a nice travel trough the story of the world’s oceans.

They have fun and educational interactive audio-visual presentations. They also have daily highlights like dive shows, penguin feeds underwater tunnel and a lot more.

If you want to have a break, there are several possibilities to eat something or just to rest a little.  You can have a coffee and a small snack in a Costaway’s with a great view on the Humber. The Halfway café serves a variety of sandwiches and snacks. We also got some picnic areas, but we cannot guarantee table. If you would like to enjoy a two or three course meal with local products, we recommend the two Rivers Restaurant. You have an amazing atmosphere to sit under the aquarium.

The Deep is open from Monday to Sunday from 10 to 18 o’clock

Further information on the website: www.thedeep.co.uk

My conclusion from all is that Hull is a very watchable city and a placement abroad is only to be recommended!

Hull – The UK City of Trails?

Hull is a city so pack with interesting history, quirky facts and funny tales around every corner that it can be tough deciding where to start. Just walking through the medieval streets you might spot a stray fish in the pavement or a statue peeking over a wall, how many historic pubs line the cobbled streets and what makes them so historic? In the train station you will find a statue of Phillip Larkin dashing for a train but where has he come from and what other statues are to be found around the city? The answer to all of these questions and more are in our Tours and Trails guide. You can download a copy here or pick of one from the museums and galleries or the information pod in the transport interchange and start your tour of the city today!

Download the Trail Guide here



Slime by The Herd Theatre

Something Slimy This Way Comes

If you’re looking for something fun and creative for the little ones to enjoy this summer, The Herd has the answer. The theatre company’s new show SLIME is a playful, hilarious and surreal experience for children aged 2-5, following the tale of Slog the Slug trying to make friends with Cola the Caterpillar.

Made in collaboration with Hull Libraries and supported by Arts Council England, Hull City Council, Hull Truck Theatre and James Reckitt Trust, this delightful 50-minute show takes place at four libraries in Hull between Monday 20 August and Saturday 1 September, allowing families from across the city to easily participate.

SLIME is an original story created with and for early years children and their families, offering a unique experience for all. By touring to East Park Library, Gipsyville Library, Greenwood Library and Hull Central Library, the creative team will travel to east, west, north and central to involve as many kids as possible in this magical experience.

“This isn’t a traditional play performed in a traditional theatre,” explains Co-Artistic Director Sam Caseley, “Local libraries will be transformed and host a 360-degree experience.  You’ll enter the microscopic garden world of the characters Slog and Cola and help them along their journey.”

“I think slugs are amazing and their slime is like no other material on earth, but they get such a bad rep. Both the creature and the substance are fascinating, as they can be kind of disgusting and appealing all at once. Slime is incredibly popular right now, just like when I was younger, showing how we all have time for a bit of grossness in our lives.”

SLIME will greatly appeal to young children thanks to its immersive, sensory and non-verbal storytelling. Set in the undergrowth, it’s a show about what it means to be different that explores the obstacles encountered when forming new friendships.

The show coincides with Hull Libraries announcing that The Herd will be its first ever Associate Theatre Company. This partnership is rooted in the organisations’ shared values of inspiring children and young people through the arts.


Humber Street Sesh

Summer of festivals 2018

Still finding rainbow glitter in your hair from Pride In Hull? Been rocking a sea shanty earworm ever since Hull Folk Festival? Hold those thoughts … festival season is a long way from over yet.

We love a good festival here in Hull, and the city’s flagship events get bigger and better every year. With so much free entertainment alongside ticketed events, and everything from the UK’s biggest festival of unsigned musicians to a national science festival, you can’t go wrong.

In the next few weeks alone, we’ve got annual events such as the newly expanded Humber Street Sesh music festival to look forward to, the mighty Freedom Festival, Heads Up theatre festival, Yum! Festival of Food and Drink and a summer skateboard festival; as well as visiting events including Europe’s longest running science festival – the British Science Festival – and a festival of cheese (the food, not the music). Looking further ahead, Back To Ours – the festival that brings incredible, affordable acts to the heart of Hull’s communities, Humber Mouth literature festival and Contains Strong Language – a collaboration between Absolutely Cultured, the BBC and Wrecking Ball Press – are all on the horizon, too.

Humber Street Sesh

Friday 3 August and Saturday 4 August, 2018. Hull city centre. Tickets £10 per day in advance, £15 per day on the gate.

Two days. Fourteen stages. More than 200 acts.

Without question one of Hull’s annual highlights, Humber Street Sesh reigns as the UK’s biggest festival for emerging, unsigned acts.

It’s a huge success story for the city, and its roots are in a fantastic, free gig night that runs every single Tuesday at the Polar Bear venue.

Mark Page, festival founder and director, says: “Humber Street Sesh festival started life in 2012, as a crowdfunded community event in a couple of warehouses down Humber Street that saw 60 acts play to around 10,000. Seven years on, the festival is now hosting 200+ acts over an expanded site, anticipating a weekend audience of up to 40,000. Without the pull of big names, the festival attracts huge numbers and is unique in this respect. We continue to provide a powerful platform for emerging acts.”

This year, Friday 3 August is the night to see all your festival favourites, with a line-up of previous year’s headliners, including Counting Coins, Endoflevelbaddie and Chris Helme of Seahorses, as well as another chance to catch the Turn And Face The Strange production about the life of Hull’s own Spider From Mars, David Bowie guitarist Mick Ronson.

Mark Page says: “This is a real coup for the festival, and one not to be missed, as we pay tribute to the city’s finest-ever musicians who gave Bowie the platform to the world.”

Meanwhile, the full Saturday line-up gives the new blood a chance to show what they can do, with King No One headlining the main stage, plus a whole day and night of bands, DJs, live art and more.

If you want a taste of what to expect, here’s a video playlist of some of those 200+ acts.


Yum! Festival of Food and Drink

From Friday 10 August to Sunday 12 August 2018. Queens Gardens, Hull city centre. Free entry.

Three days of foodie heaven, with plenty of local produce, street food and free family entertainment to tuck into.


Hull Skateboard Festival

Until Saturday 25 August 2018. Various venues. Free.

Free skateboard sessions, culminating in a festival finale. Completely free and equipment is provided.


Freedom Festival

From Friday 31 August to Sunday 2 September. City centre. Mostly free.

The really big one. If you only do one festival in Hull this year, make it the Freedom Festival. The jewel in Hull’s cultural crown has a three-day programme as diverse as late 1980s hip-hop outfit Jungle Brothers (ask your parents, kids), jaw-dropping circus, a talk by a descendant of suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst and The Museum of the Moon – a 23ft sculpture of the moon that will shine from the heavens at Hull Minster (thankfully, said moon is now reunited with its maker, following a slight blip). Freedom Festival was launched in 2007 to commemorate anti-slavery pioneer William Wilberforce and has since established itself as a world-class annual outdoor arts festival.

Mikey Martins, artistic director and joint CEO of Freedom Festival Arts Trust describes this year’s Freedom Festival programme as “beautiful, hopeful and wonderful … we’ll continue to bring the city to life with incredible street theatre, dance and circus”.


Cheese Fest Hull

Saturday 8 September, 2018. Bonus Arena, Myton Road, Hull. From £5, plus booking fee.

A festival of cheese in Hull’s newest venue. Mmm, cheese. Amazing. There will also be a bar and live music.


British Science Festival

From Tuesday 11 September to Friday 14 September 2018. Various venues. Free entry, booking required for some events

If you’ve ever wondered about the science of beer, artificial intelligence, the secrets of human attraction, or why the world needs a vagina museum, you’re in the right place. At this year’s British Science Festival, quirky events sit alongside discussions about hard-hitting issues – from suicide to modern slavery. There will also be a science takeover at Ferens Art Gallery, and showcases for Hull and the Humber region’s areas of research excellence – energy, the environment, freedom, and healthcare.

This is brilliant British science, presented at its best through discussions, demonstrations and art installations by The British Science Association and our friends at the University of Hull. Mind-blowing stuff.


Heads Up

From Wednesday 12 September to Saturday 22 September, 2018. Various venues and ticket prices

This twice-yearly theatre festival has a reputation for putting on shows with a difference. They’ll make you laugh, make you cry, make you think … they might even make you a part of the show.

September’s performances include: Pale Blue Dot by Hull playwright Dave Windass, a secret arts event hosted by What Is Collective, Foreign Radical – an interactive theatrical game that the audience members become a part of – and Ground Control a show for seven to 12-year-olds that children are guaranteed to love, not least because there are no adults allowed.

C Neil Holmes

Let us entertain you

Visit our collection of free museums which have a host of free activities this summer or head to The Deep for a Junior Experience Day. Perhaps large music events are your thing – if so note the dates for Humber Street Sesh, Van Morrison at the new Bonus Arena or a variety of events at Zebedee’s Yard.

Watch out for surprise street theatre as giant slinkies perform a love story across the city centre, an inflatable 18 metre whale becomes a theatre and a collection of beehives tells the story of the secret life of bees.

Why not find a creative way to explore the city – guided walks are available from Hull City Hall every day until 4th November, Hull Land Train runs daily throughout summer and the Hull Explorer open top bus runs Thursday to Monday until 2nd September.

Add to all of this our iconic Festivals – Humber Street Sesh, Freedom, and YUM and we have the recipe for a great summer.

Download your event planner here!

Kain Marshall, David Harrison and Ollie Marshall at Bankside Gallery

The Bankside Gallery Story

The Bankside Gallery story reads almost like a film script.

It’s the tale of an international street art superstar, a city’s response to their work and an underground artistic subculture leaping out of the shadows to paint themselves a spotlight.

Galvanised to bring colour into forgotten corners of the city, the work of Hull’s graffiti artists is now transforming part of Hull’s industrial zone in a way that, to those in the know, it has done for decades. The difference now is, this time, it’s legal. And it’s accessible to members of the public.

An open-air legal art gallery has been created, one that is inspiring all ages and becoming a tourist attraction in its own right. Business owners have volunteered their walls to be filled with colour and artwork, artists have been rushing to showcase their work and feedback from members of the public has been overwhelmingly positive. Bankside Gallery street art quarter is growing by the week.

As a story, it’s got feelgood factor by the bucketload, a hopeful air of “if we paint it, they will come” and an over-riding sense of art being created for art’s sake. If a goal of UK City of Culture was to create an environment where independent culture thrives where you might least expect it, Bankside Gallery is well and truly doing it.

Let’s start at the beginning of this unlikely story and rewind to January 26, 2018.

Hull’s year in the spotlight as UK City of Culture 2017 has come to a close and infamous international street artist Banksy has visited the city in the middle of the night.

The city awakes to find a work of art has appeared on an almost-forgotten permanently raised bridge, the mysterious Banksy claims the piece on his Instagram feed – thereby making it “official” and that – and Scott Street bridge is instantly transformed into Hull’s unlikeliest tourist attraction.

But here’s the twist. No sooner have the good people of Hull got excited about their shiny new Banksy gift, than it is daubed with white paint, and widespread public outrage is sparked. A Hull window cleaner and friend go out in the middle of the night to try to salvage Banksy’s work and are hailed as heroes. Banksy’s – now slightly less than pristine – artwork is saved and quickly covered in Perspex before anything else happens to it.

It left many in Hull’s largely underground graffiti community a little non-plussed. After all, unless you’re Banksy, your illegal artwork is not always welcome.

An idea began to grow. Friends and business colleagues Ollie Marshall and Kain Marshall run an aerosol art company, Spray Creative.

Ollie says: “Basically, me and Kain are part of Spray Creative and we’re also graffiti artists in Hull, so when Banksy came and painted it turned Hull upside down. Suddenly, everyone wanted to know more about the graffiti scene and we became the go-to guys to ask these questions. All of a sudden, everyone became graffiti mad in Hull so we thought, well, let’s see. Nobody could deny the level of interest, the footfall, the hype and the media interest.

“News crews got in touch, David Harrison – a BBC journalist in Hull – did a radio interview with us about whether the Banksy piece was changing attitudes in the city. Me and Kain [of Spray Creative] realised that to keep people in the area around the Banksy piece, there needed to be more there. It was a forgotten industrial area, we needed to give some walls back to Hull’s graffiti scene.

“2017 in Hull was all about drumming up interest and getting everyone on board, now we’ve found ourselves delivering a legacy project, almost by chance. In a way, Bankside Gallery is something that we can give back to the UK City of Culture.”

Ollie, Kain and journalist David joined forces and Bankside Gallery was born.

David says: “I’ve always loved graffiti, street art and everything in between. After the Banksy appeared and I saw the public reaction, it was obvious that there was so much talent out there that many people were completely oblivious to. Ollie and Kain were thinking the same thing: Obviously, having a Banksy on an industrial estate is great, but if no art sprung up around it, it wouldn’t become a tourist attraction and people wouldn’t spend money at local businesses.”

What surprised all three of the founders of Bankside Gallery was how quickly they managed to make it happen.

David adds: “Alan Clarke, who was a councillor at the time, helped make it happen for us. It blew us away how quickly people from the art scene mobilised. We wanted to give local artists a platform to be seen, in a way that would hopefully regenerate an area through street art and graffiti. For example, if you go to parts of Berlin or Budapest, often street art comes first and regeneration comes second – we don’t want gentrification, but maybe a nightclub here, or a coffee shop there would be good. So many visitors are coming to see the artwork, we hope it helps local business, such as The Whalebone pub.”

And the tourists really are coming. Teachers have been organising school trips, coaches have been spotted parked up on the main gallery street, next to The Whalebone pub. OAPs and children have been photographed learning how to make art with spraycans. A project is in the pipeline with Ollie’s old school Hedon Primary. Walking tours around the area have been organised. You get a sense that this is just the beginning.

Hull’s graffiti artists, many of whom have been quietly contributing to the city’s subculture for years, are turning out in all weathers, to provide fresh paint and fresh colour. They’ve been joined by traditional artists, paste-up artists, stencillers, in fact, anyone who wants to have a go at making art in public.

David says: “It’s a collective effort: Hull City Council gave us the thumbs up to do it; the artists are all doing it for free, Crown Paint is donating emulsion for the backgrounds of the pieces for free, we’re doing it for free.”

Ollie agrees: “It’s unreal. We’ve had the most welcome feeling from Hull in general. We’ve had support from the art scene, members of the public and the businesses who’ve donated their walls. When we’re out painting, we get thumbs up from people going past,  people bring us water, we get claps… when one of Hull’s most respected graffiti artists was back in the city for a few days, he was asking, ‘what have you done to Hull?!’.

“From my point of view as a graffiti artist, the Bankside area is the graffiti mecca of Hull. Crews I grew up admiring painted on the [long-gone] derelict warehouses, John Peel even visited once and was made an honorary member of the crew. As a young lad, I used to get on a bus and go to the warehouses. It’s amazing now to be painting around there, with so many legal walls that you’re spoilt for choice.

“It’s a little hub of positive energy. You get this interaction of different worlds. People love the fact that there’s now colour now in a grey area and the artists love the fact that everyone loves it. We’ve done this for a long time in the shadows, it’s nice to get a good reaction.”

Bankside Gallery: The Movie hasn’t actually been made yet. No one would be allowed to know who plays Banksy, for one thing. Although all British actors with Bristolian accents and everyone who’s ever been in Massive Attack would be listed on the IMDB credits. Just in case. But if they keep painting it, will film crews come? Who knows? National TV crews have already been.

Bankside Gallery has produced a map of the graffiti, street art and paste-up walls in the Bankside area. You can also follow Bankside Gallery on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.

NOTE: Banksy’s Draw the Raised Bridge work is soon to be moved for safety reasons until a new home can be prepared for it. Check Hull City Council’s Twitter feed for the latest details.

Kieran Stewart

Dominoes route announced

Absolutely Cultured is bringing the streets and buildings of Hull to life with a playful and epic summer event, Dominoes. An internationally acclaimed, celebratory event, Dominoes will take over Hull city centre, engaging with its architecture on a 3.5 km domino run for all to enjoy, on Saturday 11 August 2018. The event is free and unticketed.

Dominoes will weave its way through streets, public squares, civic buildings and private homes, climbing stairs, falling from windows and occasionally conquering the impressive structures that punctuate the route, which are built from yet more blocks.

The day will begin at 12 noon, where spectators can watch the domino run being assembled. 450 City of Culture Volunteers will be working alongside Station House Opera’s Artistic Director, Julian Maynard Smith, to install the incredible structures, using over 12,000 breezeblocks.

Once constructed, spectators can explore the full route with all the structures in place from 2:30pm and can even gain access to some of the interesting and not frequently accessed spaces of the city, such as The Guildhall and the Boat Yard at Hull Marina. Absolutely Cultured have advised audiences to plan their time and find their favourite spot to watch the domino run in action. A detailed map is available online to download from www.absolutelycultured.co.uk, and printed maps will be available on the day.

At 4:30pm the first domino will be pushed at the Boat Yard; this will create a chain reaction across the city, a moving sculpture that will last around 60 minutes. Spectators can watch as the dominoes wind down streets, tumble from balconies and conquer massive sculptures along the way.

Dominoes Route Map

In a first for Dominoes, the route in Hull is split into two sections which are linked by vehicle. Starting in the Boat Yard at Hull Marina, the first section pauses in front of Burt’s, the new Pizzeria and Gelato restaurant near the Fruit Market, from here a vehicle will take a block along the A63 to re-start the run in Australia houses on Great Thornton Estate. The domino run will finish in Queens Gardens, where YUM! Food and Drink Festival is also taking place over the weekend – even more reason to make a day of it.

One of the Hull 2017 Major Partners, MKM, has demonstrated continued support for the City of Culture legacy, by generously supplying the blocks for Dominoes. Following the event, the blocks will be donated to local charities.

Got a question? Take a look at the FAQ and road closures here

Cultural Highlights: 18 – 25 July 2018

Hull Jazz Festival

19 – 21 July 2018 Price £6 – £23

Various Locations 

Hull Jazz Festival is back, packed with the talent that’s currently making the UK Jazz scene the envy of the world.

Multi-award winning vocalist Cleveland Watkiss MBE opens the festival, and the closing show features MOBO award-winning saxophonist Denys Baptiste and his acclaimed re-imagining of John Coltrane’s late music.

Tower Tours

19 July 2018 Price£4 – £8

Hull Minster

Hull Minster is one of the tallest and most iconic buildings in Hull. Standing at over 150ft tall, it’s tower has unparalleled views of Old Town, the city centre, the docks, the marina, the Humber and beyond. You can read more about the tours in this piece by guest writer Jo Charlton.

Measures of Life by the Lumen Prize for Digital Art

20 Jul – 30 Sep 2018 Free

Humber Street Gallery 

New exhibition opens at Humber Street Gallery on the 20th July. Artists using a variety of media, invite the audiences to reflect on their own reality and think about how new advances in technology might affect our daily lives. Interactive machines and augmented realities will take over the gallery spaces to highlight pertinent themes of how technology might simultaneously govern us, whilst also offering new possibilities and freedom.

Pride in Hull 2018

21 July 2018 Free with bookable elements

Queens Gardens

Starting with a spectacular parade starring street artists and specially commissioned performances from Back to Ours alongside  everyday heroes from local organisations, this spectacular LGBT+ festival is a true gem of Hull’s summer calendar.


BBC Introducing on Radio Humberside

25 July 2018 Price £5

Bonus Arena

The first ticketed event to take place at Hull’s newest venue the Bonus Arena. BBC Radio Humberside is hosting a fantastic night of live music featuring the best of local bands

Hull Minster Tower Tour

View from: The top of Hull Minster

On a clear day, you can stand at the top of Hull Minster tower and see all the way to North Lincolnshire on the south bank of the River Humber. Turn north-eastward, and you could see Spurn Point on the East Yorkshire coast; look north and you might be able to spot Beverley Minster.

If you’ve got a head for heights, and you’re not fazed by the prospect of climbing a couple of hundred steep, medieval steps, you’re in for a treat.

Guided Tower Tours run fortnightly at Hull Minster, at 5pm, 6pm, 7pm and 8pm. The next available dates are July 19, August 9, August 23, September 6, September 20 and October 11. Tours can be arranged at other times of year by appointment.

If you check sunset times when you visit, you might even be able to time your tour to coincide with a sunset over Hull’s Old Town, or an atmospheric twilight view of the marina and rivers.

James Symonds, events coordinator at Hull Minster, says the Tower Tours provide an unrivalled perspective on Hull. “It’s the tallest public-access building in the city,” he says.

With the viewing platform at 150ft above the ground, you get a unique perspective from the 13th-century minster.

Each Tower Tour begins with a warm welcome, a talk about the minster’s history and a health and safety briefing. The halfway mark of the climb takes you past Hull Minster’s clock mechanism, bells and carillion bells.

Sounding every 15 minutes, be sure to stop, listen and see if you can work out what tune the bells are playing.

Steve says: “We control the carillion bells via a keyboard. The music reacts to the news, for example, when Carrie Fisher died, we played the Star Wars theme tune in memory of her. We’ve played the Harry Potter music in the past, and we’re currently playing Mozart’s Canon in D Major. It always gets people talking.”

If you’re lucky, you may even see – and hear – them in action.

After the halfway point, another 100-plus steps take you up to the rooftop viewing platform at the very top of Hull Minster, where you can soak up those breathtaking views. Enjoy.

  • Tickets cost £4/£5 for the tour only; £7/£8 for the tour, plus drinks and cake in the minster’s café.
  • Please note that children must be aged 10 or over to take a Tower Tour, and under-17s must be accompanied by an adult.



Lucy Brinkmeier

My time and my highlights in Hull

So what am I doing here in Hull? I am here for a work placement in the Hull City Council. During the 3 weeks in England I live in a host family with three more students who are also working for the Hull City Council. In this time I got many impressions about the work and the different sectors. The first week I have been in the city economy after in the planning and now in the major projects. It is a really good possibility to see the daily life of the Britain’s which is quite different to that from German’s.


During my time here I have learnt a lot about Hull and its’ culture. It is a really interesting und impressive city with a lot of history. There are so many things to see! For example the Queen Victoria Square which is in the heart of Hull. Around it you can find the Ferens Art Gallery which has a collection of paintings and sculptures and also masterpieces by Lorenzetti, Frans Hals and many more. There is also the Maritime Museum which includes maritime arts and ships models as well as paintings and artefacts. Moreover there is the Museums Quarter which consists of four different museums: The Streetlife Museum in which you can step back in time and see 200 years of transport history, The Wilberforce house which is the birthplace of William Wilberforce, the Arctic Corsair a deep-sea trawler that was converted to a museum ship and the Hull and East Riding Museum with an Iron Age village, a Roman bathhouse and mosaics, Viking treasures and wooden warriors. There are also many alleys and little streets which are perfect for taking photos or just walking through.


One day I have been in The Deep which is a huge aquarium with a wide variety of fishes. I have even seen sharks, sawfishes and jellyfishes. It was really interesting because I have never been in such a big aquarium.


But it is not only the culture and the buildings which are interesting but also the people! They are so friendly and courteous and everybody knows so much about Hull and its’ history.


To finish I can say that Hull is a really interesting and beautiful city which you should have visited.