What's On in Dorset

Many of the events and festivals taking place throughout Dorset are listed here in our guide to what’s on in Dorset. The list covers Bournemouth events, Poole events and Weymouth events as well as events and festivals in many of the county’s market towns and smaller villages. So, to find out what’s on in Dorset while you are here on holiday or visiting for a short break, take a look below.

06 Dec

Westbourne, Dorset BH4

06/12/2014 To 06/12/2014

9:00 am To 5:00 pm

Saturday 6th December is the date set for the ever popular Westbourne Christmas Festival and lights switch on. There is a buzz in the air as shops and businesses prepare for the big day and of course the arrival of Santa who will be in the Westbourne Arcade.

Visitors will discover a festive atmosphere in Westbourne on the day with a packed programme of entertainment arranged. Acts will be performing at different locations around Westbourne including in the historic Victorian arcade and outside the So Furniture store. At the main stage outside Marks & Spencer’s there will be a wide mix of acts performing to entertain shoppers from 10am until 4.30pm with fun and goodies from Jack FM.

Performers will include The Jimmy Hill Billies, Bournemouth University Big Band, The Ageas Retail Choir, SBLAS Performing Arts School, Swing Unlimited Community Band, Buckholme Towers School Choir and more. There will also be dancing by Westbourne based dance school, Salsa Explosion.

The Christmas lights switch on will be around 4.15 pm by local celebrity Mungo Jerry who will of course be performing to the crowd too.

03 Mar

Rex Cinema, Wareham, Dorset BH20 4JX

03/03/2015 To 07/03/2015

7:30 pm To

The Rex Players present their variety show “Pack Up Your Troubles” at the Rex Cinema, Wareham, Dorset from 3rd – 7th March 2015 at 7.30pm.

Full of fun, laughter, drama, musicality and frivolity all in aid of local charities.

Tickets on sale at the Discover Purbeck Information Centre 01929 552740 from 7th January 2015.

29 Nov

The Old Workshops, Brewers Quay, Weymouth, Dorset DT4 8TR

29/11/2014 To 29/11/2014

11:00 am To 4:00 pm

Mrs Darlings Christmas Market: A selection of seasonal stalls selling delicious treats from local suppliers & unique creative items & gifts, all made by Dorset designers and craftsmen. Entertainment, fresh cakes, hot drinks, mulled wine, mince pies and so much more.

Plus the fabulous creative businesses that are permanently found in The Old Work Shops all tucked behind Brewers Quay, Weymouth, Dorset.

Open from 11am until 4pm on Saturday 29th November.

There’s a pay & display car park opposite and blue badge holders can park on near by roads.

12 Dec

The Toy Barn, Blackmarsh Farm, Sherborne, Dorset DT9 4JX

12/12/2014 To 21/12/2014

11:00 am To 3:00 pm


Book your tickets online at www.toy-barn.co.uk/christmas or call 01935 815040 for more details. Please contact The Toy Barn for information about group bookings.

Children can meet Father Christmas at The Toy Barn in Sherborne in his themed grotto on Friday 12th December 1-4pm and Saturday 13th December, Sunday 14th December, Saturday 20th December and Sunday 21st December 2014 from 11am-3pm.

Father Christmas is only at The Toy Barn for 5 days in his busy schedule. Booking in advance is advisable to avoid disappointment.

Tickets are £6 per child, which includes a present. Adult entry is free.

Book your tickets online at www.toy-barn.co.uk/christmas or call 01935 815040 for more details. Please contact The Toy Barn for information about group bookings.

Bookings are available in half hour slots with up to six visits per slot. Please select which day you’d like to visit and your time slot when booking. Tickets may be available on the day if space is available, but there may be a wait during busy periods.

06 Dec

3 School Lane, Poole, Dorset BH15 3JR

06/12/2014 To 06/12/2014

12:00 pm To 4:00 pm

Join us for a Christmas Grotto and Market. Meet Santa as well as stocking up on some Christmas presents.

Entry is £2 which includes a photo with Santa and a Christmas present!

09 Dec

The Priory, Quay Road, Christchurch, Dorset

09/12/2014 To 09/12/2014

7:00 pm To 9:00 pm

 Join us for the annual Autism Wessex Christmas Carol Concert.

With performances by The Funky Little Choir, readings by staff, pupils and the Mayor of Christchurch, plus festive Christmas carols, we guarantee you will leave with huge amounts of Christmas cheer!

After the concert there will be mince pies and mulled wine available for a donation to Autism Wessex.

There’s no need to book but please come early to ensure a seat!

07 Feb

Allendale Centre, Hanham Road, Wimborne, Dorset BH21 1AS

07/02/2015 To 07/02/2015

8:00 pm To 11:00 pm

Probably Dorset’s Finest ‘Covers’ Band are appearing at The Allendale Centre in Wimborne on the evening of 7 February 2015. Doors open at 8pm. All proceeds are being shared equally between Cancer Research UK and Poole Hospital’s Ladybird (Breast Care) Unit. The event is called “Come in Pink” and everyone is being encouraged to wear something pink. There is a licensed bar, a raffle and there will be a short talk in the break from a cancer expert on the importance of self-examination and early detection.

The Alibi are consistently ‘great’ and excel in a large venue such as The Allendale Centre. This promises to be a fantastic evening in aid of two very worthy causes. Come along and enjoy some great music, have fun, learn something that could safeguard your health and take a chance of winning a fantastic raffle prize!

Tickets are available now from the Event Organiser Stephen Cassidy Guitar Tuition, from The Allendale Centre, from ‘Guitar Mania’ 116-118 Ashley Road, Parkstone, Poole Tel 01202 718886 or 01202 733734 (in store cash only) and from The Alibi direct.

28 Feb

Portland, Dorset

28/02/2015 To 28/02/2015


Tuff-Enuff Portland Breakout 2015 is an endurance obstacle course race on the Isle of Portland in Dorset in the heart of the Jurassic Coast.

This is not an event for the faint hearted!

You have two route options: “Rock Hard”, a gruelling endeavour over approximately 5km; and “Hard Core”, a punishing trial over approximately 12km. There will be more than 30 obstacles and a hostile terrain.

The race entry fee includes an exclusive “Breakout” T-Shirt, a timing chip and free camping plus a medal for those who complete the course.

There is free entry for spectators as well as music, food vendors, trade stands and more.

06 Dec

Bournemouth Pavilion Theatre, Westover Road, Bournemouth, Dorset BH1 2BU

06/12/2014 To 04/01/2015


Peter Pan will be the pantomime at Bournemouth Pavilion this Christmas.

Starring Blue Peter presenter Barney Harwood as Peter Pan, Mark Benton from Waterloo Road as Captain Hook and Helena Dowling from Nick Jr as Tiger Lily.

14 Dec


14/12/2014 To 14/12/2014

3:00 pm To 4:30 pm

Allington Strings presents a programme of light classical music for Christmas at St John’s Church, West Bay on Sunday 14th December at 3pm. The programme will include J S Bach Brandenburg Concerto no 3, Corelli Christmas Concerto, Mozart Divertimento No 3, Elgar Salut D’Amour, Gershwin Love Walked In.

07 Dec

Moors Valley Country Park, Dorset

07/12/2014 To 07/12/2014

10:30 am To 1:00 pm


If you would like to get involved then please contact the fundraising team at Diverse Abilities or visit our website for more information.

Moors Valley Country Park
Sunday 7th December 2014 – 10.30am

Choose from 10k, 8k and 2.3k routes
Walk, jog, hop or skip your way around Moors Valley, embracing the festive season

If you fancy spreading some extra Christmas cheer this year then this is the event for you. Join us in this beautiful woodland location to walk, jog, hop, skip or run your way around a choice of routes to suit you. Funds raised from the Jingle Jog will ensure the charity’s vital services continue over the festive season and beyond. By taking part in this event you will be helping to provide the people we support with a Christmas they will always treasure.

Children 5yrs and under FREE (2.3K route only and must be accompanied by a paid parent/or guardian participant)
6 to 17 years old: £5 Entry Fee (£15 min sponsorship)
Adults 18+: £10 Entry Fee (£30 min sponsorship)

04 Dec

Dorchester, Dorset DT1

04/12/2014 To 04/12/2014

5:30 pm To

Dorchester Christmas Cracker is an evening of family entertainment, shopping and a street fair.

31 Dec

Weymouth town centre and harbourside, DT4

31/12/2014 To 31/12/2014


25 Dec

Weymouth Harbour, DT4

25/12/2014 To 25/12/2014


14 Dec

Weymouth Beach, DT4

14/12/2014 To 14/12/2014


Chase the Pudding Santa Run in Weymouth – join your family and friends, dress up as a Santa and chase a Christmas pudding, not a real one – a person in a costume!