Leamington Peace Festival

…Two days of inspiration and celebration

The Leamington Peace Festival (LPF) is one of the UK’s longest running free festivals. It takes place each year on the weekend before the Summer Solstice, filling the Pump Room Gardens, in the heart of Royal Leamington Spa, with a brilliant mix of family friendly activities, free workshops, Peace talks, live music, vibrant local stalls, campaign groups, healing treatments and a wide range of vegetarian food stalls.

The first festival, at the time called the Leamington Festival for International Understanding and Peace, was held in 1978. Conceived as a non-political, non-profit making event, its roots stem from previous festivals held with growing interest and success in the area, each basing its theme on aspects of Peace (Peace Pledge Union, Oxfam Festival and Leamington Spa Health Foundation).

The Festival immediate was an immense success thanks to the response of the local community, with over thirty organisations taking part in the first year. The main idea was to present in a joyful way the aims of various groups who work with dedication to bring a better quality of life to all people without distinction, both within the community and overseas.

As in the words of Gian Clare, one of the first organisers, the plan “was to bring all the life-minded organisations together to demonstrate to the Leamington people that is better to live together in harmony with one another as good neighbours. That we must work towards peace, justice, security and human rights for all’.

Howard Watson
Howard Watson member of the first volunteer committee in 1978 

Programme 1980
Programme cover for the Leamington Festival for International Understanding and Peace in 1980, before it became The  Leamington Peace Festival 

The Leamington Peace Festival, now established as one of the main events in the community calendar, has grown and developed in such way that change has been inevitable, but the essential state of the founders is still present.

The aim of promoting peace and equality between people while living in harmony with the environment is the force that pulls a team of dedicated volunteers to help to set up, run and take down the festival, every year.

In 2014, in addition to a fantastic selection of music throughout the weekend, there was a special focus on getting back to the roots of centring the festival on the peace campaign.

2015 was another exciting year with a few changes to provide more excitement to all visitors.

And 2016 looks to be better again with good music, stalls and plenty of entertainment! If you would like to be a part of this year’s festival we are always on the look out for Festival Volunteers. See how you can “Get Involved”.

”Someone once said a long time ago: walking into the Pump Room Gardens during the Festival is like walking through a bead curtain into a better world. Long may that continue?” Janet Alty