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What’s On

2022 Theme

A Journey Through Evolution

This year the whole site is linked by the theme From Dinosaurs to Robots, ‘A Journey Through Evolution’
is in honour of development of growth and transformation.

Returning features and activities and new installs!

The awesome stars of the show return in our two fireworks displays a night at Illuminate the Gardens and are once again provided by award winning Yorkshire company OPTIMUM FIREWORKS, with a ‘low bangs’ display taking place earlier in the evening and a mindblowing finale display set to music towards the end of the event. 

FX Productions return again this year for another jaw- dropping lightshow and laser extravaganza from inside and all around and from the top of the Pavillion and ILum-N8  are coming back with their fantastic Tulip garden and a few other new tricks to showcase in 2021 and we will once again see Bear go on another magical adventure journey in her resident home on site. 

The immensely popular Tales From The Other Side Shadow puppet show will be back with new added elements, as will be the Quirky instrument garden set up with more added twists for 2021. 

We are really pleased to invite back the Party Wonderland zone brought to you by Modular Moods, with their Tropical caravan bar and food truck Vinyl wrapped in art by local artist Yas Mina, JBL sound system, audiovisuals, lighting including a giant walk in mirrored infinity cube, sculptures and vintage furniture! 

The funfair is back from North Fayres with the range of children’s rides and side stalls to entertain the Tots & tykes, but new for 2021, will be a larger installation and rides for the older bigger kids and that also means Mom and Dad too.  

The Arts and Crafts Tent up on the top path from the end of the glass house on the way to the bear pit, was packed out last year and we will be bringin it back this year with yet more wonderful frere crafts and a range of fair priced face paints and glitter and glow artists that all the family can enjoy. 

Add to this all the tasty and cool street food traders and quirky pop up bars, with another smash hit return from the Avalanche Tipi Cafe situated at the top of the Pavillion and we are also adding in and introducing the Cosy Snug Bar Tent new for 2021.

Many of the Botanical Garden’s beautiful features have been specially lit for the event to show them off in all their glory. We recommend a stroll around the open paths during the event, see MAP for more details. 

One particular return for the four year that we are really excited about, will be the numerous stunning decor installations from local team Cloud 9 Decor.

There will be Fire and light up Poi performances once again from local teams on site and some other new beautiful and transfixing walkabout performers that we are keeping a secret on what they are for now and that brings us to our best kept secret and the huge new area of light on a magical trail of wonder through a newly opened section of the gardens for 2021. So much going on this year and we are looking to make it our best year ever and for you all to have the best time possible to celebrate the light in the dark after what has been a very challenging time for everyone.

The best places to view the fireworks are the Tulip Garden displays Zone and the main Boardwalk between the Pavilions and fountain, and on the areas where the lawns have been covered near the bar and food traders, are another popular area to view the fireworks and the amazing light show.

Bear’s Tropical Adventure – From exploring outer space last year, this year we’ve decided to send Bear to a tropical land far beyond the seas on another illuminated adventure. The Bear Pit will be transformed into a UV jungle zone, brought to you by Manchester based artist Kelly Blue Creative, Add to the adventure by creating your own insect critter to hang within the Bear Pit or take home if you wish. 




Event Timings

Some of our free family activities run at restricted times, please see the THINGS TO DO section below for more information.




Sound Sculpture Garden With an array of giant percussion and instruments made
from upcycled materials placed around the Marnock Garden
brought to you by Ben Gates – https://www.orchestraofobjects.co.uk.
Join in, get creative and show off your musical rhythms with some wonderful noisy toys!

Tales from the other side Be a part of your own story in the amazing Shadow Puppet Theatre created by local artist Liz Von Graevenitz – http://www.lizvongraevenitz.co.uk.
This interactive installation is for both young and old to experience and bring it to life.

My Arty Party – www.myartyparty.co.uk is a family run business established in 2014 and based in Sheffield. Providing arts and crafts entertainment for children that inspires and encourages their natural creativity and imagination, come join them in the kids activities tent this year to create your own paper bag luminaries or experiment with leaf printing!

Facepainters! Many of the Botanical gardens features have been specially lit for the event, add to the sparkle by getting your face glittered! We have 2 groups of amazing glitter girls situated in the kids activities tent and near the Modular Moods party zone, to make sure you, your friends and family are sparkling away with bio- degradable glitter. 

For the more mature audience looking for a warming tipple, a fancy cocktail or a glass of fizz at some of our bars around site including the Modular Moods tent and the Avalanche Tipi.


NEW 2021 map.


Spectacular lighting – fireworks – street food – licensed bar – and more!