Wells – City of Festivals

Wells Market 3

October 2016 saw an inaugural cultural collaboration in Wells with four Festivals showcasing a wealth of local and national talent to create a spectacular autumn in Somerset.

At other times of the year the city plays host to a drama festival, a comedy festival, a film festival and a brilliantly illuminated carnival. Wells may be small, but it holds a proud place in the festival world. The city also boasts highly popular bi-weekly markets, regular craft fairs and a full season of events hosted by both here at the Cathedral and the Bishop’s Palace.

Wells Festival of Literature

Taking place this year from 13th – 21st October, the Wells Festival of Literature operates annually over nine days every October with all events held in a comfortable marquee in the gardens of the spectacular Bishop’s Palace. The Festival’s main objective is to promote the enjoyment and excitement of books and to encourage a love of the written word. This is done by bringing to Wells a wide range of international, national and local writers to entertain, challenge, inspire and inform audiences of all ages and tastes.


Wells Food Festival

On Sunday 8 October, from 10.30 to 4.30, Wells Food Festival returns once again to celebrate the best of Somerset’s wonderful local produce. Last year’s one-day event had 150 stalls and attracted over 12,000 visitors.


 WAC – Wells Art Contemporary

Rewind – Exhibition   Saturday 8 – 21 October 2017  Open daily 10-6 pm

The WAC Awards is an open competition for contemporary visual art that has gained praise and respect in Britain and abroad. It was established five years ago by a group of artists and their friends in Wells.  WAC 2017 celebrates its fifth anniversary with an exhibition of new work by past winners in the Bishop’s Palace, Wells. The competition will return  in October 2018.


nmw- new music wells

The 2017 new music wells festival will take place from Sunday 15 – Thursday 19 October at Wells Cathedral. This year’s distinguished featured composer is Howard Skempton. His new choral works will be premiered by Wells Cathedral Choir on Thursday 19 October at the 5.15pm service of Choral Evensong. He will be in conversation with fellow composers for Composer Conversations with Lord (Michael) Berkeley CBE, host of BBC Radio 3’s ‘Private Passions’ at 2.30pm on Wednesday 18 October.

Admission to all nmw events is free.