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What To Do This Weekend Whatever The Weather
What's on
September 2023
Reading time 3 Minutes

The weather can't make its mind up, with the sun shining one minute and the heavens opening the next

Come rain or shine, here's what you'll want to do this weekend.
David Nellist as Daniel Blake at Northern Stage

Drink up…

York Beer & Cider Festival is back from 13th–16th and what’s more unique than drinking beer in a church? You’ll find cask beer bars between the pillars and outside walls of St Lawrence Parish Church, cider, wine and mead in the church hall, while keg and European beers are at the end of the nave. The four-day festival is all about supporting York’s pubs and local breweries, and they will be serving up to 230 beers and 40 ciders across the weekend. New for 2023, there will also be a festival fringe with events such as tap takeovers and cellar tours taking place across the weekend at local watering spots too.  


I, Daniel Blake returns to Northern Stage this weekend and whether you’ve seen the film or not, you need to see this show. Adapted by local actor and writer Dave Johns from the film directed by Ken Loach, it’s a touching story of how people come together in the face of adversity and the reality of what happens when the political system is stacked against you. If you do go to see the show this weekend our recommendation is to take a pack of tissues with you – Living North’s arts editor saw the show when it last came to Northern Stage in June, and you can read her review here.  

Go racing…

Racing at Doncaster comes into its own at this time of year and you don’t want to miss the Betfred St Leger Festival from 14th–17th September. Expect four thrilling days of action and excitement, beginning with Ladies Day and everything that comes with it (we’re talking fabulous fashion and live music), and culminating on the final day of the festival with St Leger Day. Join the jubilant crowds to see a piece of horse racing history this weekend. 

Read More: Five Things To See and Do in the North East This September

Show day…

This Saturday it’s the Thropton Annual Show and Sports, and with so much to see and do, plus something for all ages, it’s the perfect day out for the whole family. There are horticultural and industrial classes for you to enter, lots of trade stands and car boot sales to browse, and plenty of other entertainment throughout the day including a falconry display, Highland pipe band and bouncy castle. There will of course be the popular fell race taking place as well, with the route starting from the show ground, crossing the River Coquet, up to the high point of Simonside and back. 

Be creative…

Get creative with Durham-based macrame artists Adeline & Twine, as this Saturday they are holding a Rainbow & Cactus making workshop at Lanchester Garden Centre. Join them for an afternoon of knotting and learn how to make either a beautiful macrame rainbow or cactus to take home with you. All materials come in a range of colours to choose from and refreshments will be provided along with expert guidance throughout, making it the perfect workshop for all abilities and ages. 

Wooly walk…

Do something a bit different this Sunday, by taking part in the Dales Countryside Museum’s Woolly Wander Experience. Visit a local alpaca farm on Raydaleside, meet the animals and take them for a gentle stroll through the spectacular landscape of the Yorkshire Dales, with stunning views of the Dales’ second largest natural lake, Semerwater. Next, guided by a local crafter, explore the Dales Countryside Museum’s textile gallery and learn the techniques and processes to create your own felted picture using fibre from the alpacas you have met.

Read More: BBC DIY SOS The Big Build Transforms a Building for Newcastle's True Colours Theatre

Dine out…

Sunderland Restaurant Week is back on the menu from 16th September and it’s a popular event for travelling foodies and locals alike. This week-long event showcases the best eateries across the city, allowing them to show off their delicious dishes at a fraction of the normal price. Menus start from as little as £10 and with venues such as My Dehli and Six Pier Point getting involved it’s not to be missed. Here we’ve picked 10 places to book to dine at a discount this weekend. 

In bloom…

It’s the Harrogate Autumn Flower Show this weekend at Newby Hall & Gardens and it promises beautiful seasonal floral displays, as well as exceptional produce from the allotment. Garden inspiration for both the expert and occasional gardener will feature in abundance, while visitors to the show can also enjoy Newby Hall’s award-winning gardens, live talks and demonstrations, great garden shopping and stunning floral art installations within Newby Hall itself. Visitors can grab something to refuel from the outdoor food court and make a full day of it.

Cheer on…

After a convincing win against Argentina, England are facing Japan this weekend in the next round of the Rugby World Cup. Having last met during this tournament in 1987, it’s set to be an exciting match. Japan are above England by one point in Pool D following a significant win over Chile, but even without captain Owen Farrell (thanks to a four-game ban) England are looking revitalised going into the weekend. Kick off at the Stade de Nice is this Sunday at 8pm, and this is definitely a match to get excited about.

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