Southwell is a wonderful place to visit at any time of year, but particularly so in October when the town holds a special event to celebrate its history as the birth place of the Bramley Apple (the original tree is still standing and bearing fruit). This year the Bramley Festival takes place on Saturday 21st October, 10am to 4pm.Bramley apples flowing in and around a basket at The Bramley Festival in #Southwell

The festival goes back as far as 1993, with the addition of the Food & Drink Festival in 2011. The combined event attracts thousands of people, from the UK and abroad, and this year will be attended by a representative from the Japanese Bramley Apple Fan Club and others drawn from far and wide to the 200-year heritage of this delicious fruit.

What is going on at The Bramley Festival 2017?

As with previous years, the 2017 event is full of apple themed activities. The Food and Drink Festival takes place at Southwell Minster with many of the main festival activities in Southwell Library. There are also events at the Archbishop’s Palace, at Southwell Racecourse, at the nearby National Trust property, The Workhouse, and throughout Southwell Town.

Here is a roundup of activities at the different venues to help you plan your trip to Southwell for The Bramley Festival.

Saturday 21 October

Archbishop’s Palace

9am to 5pm Free children’s activities in the Archbishop’s Palace Garden, with crafts, food treats and trails.

Southwell MinsterApple produce at The Bramley Festival, including pies and jams

10am: The Food & Drink Festival opening ceremony.

11am to 2.45pm: Cookery demonstrations will take place, with a variety of Bramley themes – pork, bread, baking, weight loss and entertaining.

Southwell Library

9am to 3pm: Entries to the Bramley Painting and Poetry Competitions will be on display. (Winner announced on Sunday.) Also, WI stalls will be offering delicious homemade pies, cakes and refreshments.

10am to 3pm: Activities with a Bramley theme and the chance to learn more about The Workhouse and BHI Museum of Time Keeping.

1pm to 3pm: Apple pie competition – the entries will be on view and Notts WI will announce the prize winner.Apple themed paintings at The Bramley Festival in Southwell

2.30pm: Music provided by Minster School Ceilidh Band plus singing and clog dancing performances.

3.30pm: Crowning of the 2017 Bramley King and Queen. Children from Lowes Wong Infant School will wear their apple costumes in the hope of becoming this year’s winners. Children’s House Nursery will join in the fun with the Bramley Apple Prince and Princess Competition.

The Workhouse

12 noon to 4pm: There will be Clog dancing and apple activities. Visitors can create the longest apple peel, follow the Bramley trail, watch the Yorkshire Chandelier women’s clog dancing team and admire the Bishop’s Morris sword team in action. Normal admission charges apply.

Town wide activitiesDecorated shop window in #Southwell for the Bramley Festival

11am to 2.30pm: There will be Morris dancing displays at venues throughout Southwell.

All day: Expect some wonderful apple themed window displays in shops and businesses throughout the town.


Sunday 22 October

Southwell Library

4.30pm: Bramley Painting and Poetry Awards. There will be poetry readings by Voice Versa and the poetry and painting competition winners announced. Free admission accompanied by a cream tea.

Southwell Racecourse

12 noon: The Bramley Race takes place at the racecourse, with a Bramley tree presented to the winning owners.


For more information

Full details are available in a leaflet form from Southwell Tourist Information Centre, the Minster Centre, Church Street, Southwell, NG25 0HD. Tel 01636 819038. Email There is also information online at


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