Top Arts and Culture Events in Yorkshire


Yorkshire is a county with a rich tradition in the arts. With our long cultural history, with influences from both close at hand, the wider UK, and of course from abroad, as a county we have a wealth of art and culture to explore throughout the year right on our doorstep.

With Hull having been crowned the City of Culture for 2016, Yorkshire has never had it better on the arts and culture scene. We’re spoilt for choice with small festivals popping up in between larger events, our name on the map for big sporting events, and truly something for everyone. Our top picks for the best arts and culture events in Yorkshire are:

Leeds International Film Festival

Leeds is our modern cutting-edge city, and has played host to the International Film Festival for a staggering 30 years. Running annually in November film lovers are given a vast array of genres and experiences to explore and enjoy.

Ilkley Literature Festival

Running annually in October, the Ilkley Literature Festival is a must for those with a passion for the written word. If you’re a budding writing enthusiast then you will find inspiration galore, and if you are an avid reader then this is your chance to hear from the names behind the penmanship. Ilkley is fortunate to welcome big names to the festival and you can cherry-pick events you want to go to. Pack up some snack-pork pies and plan your agenda.

York Open Studios

A national scheme that allows anyone entry to studio after studio runs in York in April each year. Artists of all types open their doors and you can come and view their art and processes. From photographers to ceramic sculpting, pottery to painting, this is an opportunity to see living art in action, on the ground.

Hebden Bridge Arts Festival

Another annual arts event runs in June/July and is a meeting of creativity and creative minds. A large number of arts are on show all in one place, with people coming together to meet, mingle, and share their love for the Yorkshire arts scene.


Only in Yorkshire could you have such a popular art and cultural event dedicated to all thing wool. Proud of our heritage, yet with a modern twist, this annual wool festival takes place in Skipton with exhibitions, demonstrations, and workshops. Fun for all the family, and you may even learn a thing or two.

Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Open year round, the Yorkshire Sculpture Park frequently plays host to an eclectic mix of different art events aimed at all of the Yorkshire population, young or old. Have a look at their annual calendar of events to select the best events for you.

Make a day out of a visit to one of Yorkshire’s art or cultural events by packing up a picnic – just don’t forget the pork pies!

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