The Carnival is the biggest event in Swanage, spanning eight days at the end of July and often tipping into August. It’s run entirely by volunteers and in 2019 raised £28,000 for charity.
It’s famous for its colourful carnival procession and fireworks with usually three impressive displays during the week. There are more than 100 different events including air displays, live music, sporting events, games and competitions.
The action centres around Sandpit Field, just off Shore Road and the seafront, where there is a music marquee and an arena for events. However the whole town gets involved during carnival week, with among other things, the main shopping streets turning into a track for the infamous fancy dress wheelbarrow race.
It’s an extremely popular week for people to visit, so accommodation gets booked a long time in advance and the restaurants and cafes are often full to brimming. It all makes for a great party atmosphere, and often, weather allowing, it’s a massive beach party!