What’s On

Welcome to our what’s on section, divided into sections for ease of use.

If you’d like your events listed here and on DfC social media, please send details about the event, including date, time, cost, any age restrictions (up to 200 words) plus a good-quality image supplied as a jpeg file (minumim 200KB) to darlo4culture@gmail.com.


Sue Ferris Quintet at Opus 4 club

Opus 4 Jazz club’s next evening of Modern Jazz will be the 15th anniversary of the Opus 4 Jazz Club.

On 26th April, and as ever on each year since opening night 2004, the club presents The Sue Ferris Quintet although the original musicians will, on this occasion, not be appearing with exception of Sue and Neil Harland.

The line-up for this concert will be: Sue Ferris, tenor sax/flute; Pete Tanton, trumpet; Ben Lawrence, piano; Neil Harland, bass; Rob Walker, drums.

  • Tickets £8 on the door
  • Doors open 7.30pm, start time 8pm
  • The Travellers Rest, Cockerton, Darlington DL3 9ER
  • Club contact 01325 382676

Darlington Music Society

Darlington Music Society’s next concert is on Saturday 27th April at the Dolphin Centre at 7.30pm. The concert is going to be given by cellist Yoanna Prodanova and pianist Mihai Ritivoiu. They will be playing pieces by Shostakovich, Chopin, Janacek and Faure.

This promoter of classical chamber music concerts in the North East brings the finest music played by world-class musicians to Darlington for live performances at reasonable prices.

To find out more, visit the DMS website.

  • Ticket £14 per concert
  • Available on the door or from the Dolphin Centre beforehand
  • Or from Mr Tooze, 66 The Headlands, Darlington DL3 8RZ. Tel 01325 467163

April at The Forum:
For the full list of gigs and events, please visit www.theforumonline.co.uk. Tel: 01325 363135.

Saturday 27th – Cydonia Knights
A Tribute to Muse + DJ Mikey A playing tunes in the bar.
Tickets £10. Doors/DJ from 7pm


Darlington Piano Society

As part of Darlington Arts Festival 2019, Darlington Piano Society presents a recital by the highly talented Chen brothers, Jeremy (13) and James (15).

Both boys were prize winners at the Chopin International Festival in Warsaw in 2016 and they both now study at Chetham’s School of Music in Manchester.

Each will give a recital either side of the interval and their programmes will include works by JS Bach, Haydn, Beethoven, Liszt, Chopin, Debussy and Prokofiev. This is a great opportunity to promote and support young, local talent.

Date and times: Sunday 19 May 3pm
Venue: Central Hall, The Dolphin Centre, Darlington
Cost: £10 (U21 – Free)

The Piano Society’s next season begins on Sunday 20th October and details will be published soon, visit the society’s website.

  • Tickets cost £12 for single recitals from the Dolphin Centre and on the door (U21, £6)

Bannatyne Hotel Darlington

The hotel runs a series of events with tribute acts and music-themed shows at the Grade-II listed Georgian townhouse. Each event is £25 per person for the live show, two-course dinner, and disco until midnight. For details and to book contact Bannatyne Hotel, Southend Avenue, Darlington DL3 7HZ. Phone 01325 365858.

Monday 6th May – Kylie Minogue
Saturday 25th May – A Night at the Movies. Features songs from the soundtracks to Grease, Dirty Dancing, Saturday Night Fever and Mamma Mia
Friday 21st June – Motown
Friday 26th July – Beeyonce (pictured)
Friday 2nd August – Pink
Friday 23rd August – Beatles
Saturday 28th September – Grease

Darlington Folk Club meets every Thursday at the Copper Beech in Neasham Road, 8pm start. More details available on the website www.darlingtonfolkclub.com

Darlington Rhythm ‘n’ Blues Club
Check out their programme at the Forum at www.darlington-r-n-b-club.co.uk

Voodoo Café
There is a chance to enjoy some terrific disco-based music in Darlington – Double Entendre – DJ Soul, Funk, Acid Jazz, held on the 4th Friday of the month at Voodoo Café, Skinnergate 8.30pm until late.

Darlington New Orleans Jazz Club

There are two events in May. The New Century Ragtime Orchestra are appearing on Saturday 4th May with special guests Enrico Tomasso on trumpet and Nick Ward on drums.

Enrico Tomasso was again the winner of the jazz trumpet category in the British Jazz Awards in 2018 making him a five times winner.Nick Ward is the UK’s leading drummer always in high demand by classic jazz bands with his unique vintage drum kit. This promises to be another outstanding day of classic jazz from the 1920s.

Saturday 18th May, in association with Darlington Arts Festival, sees the return of popular American pianist Jeff Barnhart with his “Sweet and Hot” quartet with Jeff on piano, his wife Ann on flute and vocals, Tom (Spats) Langham on banjo and guitar and Graham Smith on drums. This really is a world-class quartet.

It’s a bumper year for Darlington New Orleans Jazz Club as it welcomes a record number of bands to play lunchtime gigs at the town. There’s a total of 18 gigs booked throughout the year, up from the usual 12, which says so much about the popularity of the club.

The club takes place at St. Augustine’s Parish Centre, Larchfield Street, Darlington DL3 7TG. Doors open at noon for a 12.30pm to 3pm session.

The venue has free onsite parking, and a licensed bar that serves tea and coffee. Bring your own food for a picnic while the band is playing.

  • £10 at the door. Children under 16 free with an accompanying adult
  • Darlington for Culture members get a 20% discount on production of their membership card
  • For more information visit the club’s website


The Majestic Theatre – spring season’s programme.

Death and the Maiden
Thursday 13 June 7.30pm
The award-winning London smash-hit play and subsequent feature film is revived in this exclusive tour by Baroque Theatre Company. Gripping high drama, with great intensity, this is a unique and first-rate thriller.

The Tina Turner Experience
Saturday 15 June 7.30pm
This live energetic show charts the life and career of one of the worlds iconic performers. Full of hits like “Private Dancer”, “Nutbush City Limits”, “Proud Mary”, “River Deep Mountain High” and “Let’s Stay Together” to name but a few, this show is the ultimate night out.

Jabberwocky Market

Pop-up theatre events in April and May at venues around Darlington. More information and tickets available from the website www.luxicreative.co.uk/jabberwocky-market/

Tensile Strength (Jabberwocky Market)
by Holly Gallagher

Tensile Strength (or How to Survive at Your Wit’s End) is a performance about Stress. And figuring out why so many of us feel it to an unhealthy degree. It’s about fear, pressure, uncertainty. It’s about sadness and mental health and how we help ourselves. It’s about feeling like things are all A Bit Too Much and… then the cat goes missing. This is a show about the world we live in now and will prove essential viewing in a society that just can’t seem to relax anymore.

When: Saturday 4th May 4pm
Venue: The Hullabaloo
Tickets: £7 (or see both Tensile Strength and Eurohouse for just £10)
Age: 13+

Eurohouse (Jabberwocky Market)

Part of two nights with Bert and Nasi at GIFT and Luxi’s Jabberwocky Market.

Two performers – one Greek, one French – dance and shout, cry and sing, agree and disagree, about life in the Eurohouse. Made in transit between Greece and the UK, Eurohouse brings this difficult relationship to life through a darkly comic look at the EU’s founding ideals, and what got lost along the way.

When: Saturday 4th May 8pm
Venue: The Hullabaloo
Tickets: £7 (or see both Tensile Strength and Eurohouse for just £10)
Age: 13+

Noisy Holiday (Jabberwocky Market)
by Kid Carpet and the Noisy Animals

The Noisy Animals are looking forward to their dream holidays and have some brilliant ideas about where in the world they want to go. Kid Carpet just wants them all to be together, but will he be able to keep everyone happy when he can’t even get them in the car?

This lively show contains a mix of live music, theatre, comedy, puppetry and animation. Hot new tracks from Kid Carpet include; “Rollercoaster”, “Swimming with the Fishes” and “Get in the Car”.

A ridiculous and funny story of going on your holidays with silliness and mischief for the whole family. Expect flying tents, diving bears, massive carrots and Ibiza anthems.

Ed Patrick (aka Kid Carpet), is a Bristol-based maker of nonsense music and rock’n’roll theatre shows.

When: Friday 10 and Saturday 11 May 11am and 2pm
Venue: Middleton Hall Retirement Village
Tickets: £5 (babies under 1 free, no ticket required)
Age: family


The Hullabaloo

Children’s theatre organisation Theatre Hullabaloo runs a programme of events at its flagship venue, The Hullabaloo, Borough Road, Darlington. To buy tickets and for more information visit the website, or call the Box Office on 01325 405405

Darlington Hippodrome

For details of shows after the pantomime season, see Hippodrome launches spring season.

Performing Arts – competition

Darlington Festival for Performing Arts (DFPA) is a competition comprising three disciplines; next one is Dance on Saturday 5th October at Longfield Academy.

The organisation provides the opportunity for children and adults to perform competitively in front of professional adjudicators, showcasing their talents in Performing Arts. DFPA is affiliated to the British and International Federation of Festivals. It is run by volunteers.

DFPA encourages entries for its competitions from all over the area and beyond incorporating state and private schools/private tutors and independently run music/speech and drama and dance schools.

Contact and entry information:


Darlington Academy of Performing Arts

Does your child enjoy acting, singing and dancing? The Darlington Academy of Performing Arts holds regular classes take place at Hummersknott Academy.

For more information, visit the website.





Hilarity Bites Comedy Club brings the best of the UK and international comedy scene to venues throughout the North East of England.

For details of events, visit the Hilarity Bites website.


Darlington Amateur Gardening Club

1 May – Plant Sale. A bring-and -buy sale of members’ surplus plants.

Visitors are welcome t meetings, with a £3 contribution towards the meeting costs. Bondgate Methodist Church Lecture Hall (Winston Street entrance) and the talk usually starts at about 7.30pm, after tea/coffee from about 7pm.

For club information contact the club secretary on 01325 468870.


Darlington Historical Society (DHS)

Talks and meetings are held at the Friends Meeting House, Skinnergate, Darlington DL3 7NG (accessed via the archway on Skinnergate) starting at 7.30pm. Annual membership £10 covering all talks. Visitors £3 per meeting.

For more information, visit the Darlington Historical Society website.



The Darlington Lecture Association

Lectures take place from September to April, usually second Monday of each month 7.30pm, at Carmel RC College, The Headlands, Darlington DL3 8RP.

Membership is £25; visitor entrance is £5.

For more information, visit the website, call 01325 363350 or email dlecture@live.co.uk



Darlington Embroiderers’ Guild

Darlington Embroiderers’ Guild holds its meetings the first Saturday of each month in Elm Ridge Methodist Church Hall; 1.30 pm for talks starting 2pm. Tea and coffee is available.

4 May, Jessica Grady ‘Embracing the unconventional’
6 July, Pat Ashton Smith ‘A sense of Place’
7 September, Alison Larkin ‘Tudor needlework and costume’
5 October, Sarah Jackson ‘Folk Art Inspiration’
2 November, Gaynor Devaney ‘Sunbeam and suitcases’

New members always welcome.


Open Mic nights for writers

The nights, supported by Darlington for Culture, offer a forum for writers to read their material and audiences to enjoy it, in the upstairs room at HASH, 14 Coniscliffe Road, Darlington DL3 7RG (usually on the last Thursday of the month, except July, August and December).

The nights have given dozens of writers from Darlington and further afield the opportunity to read work including poetry, short stories, novel extracts and scripts to appreciative audiences. Readers range from published authors to those just starting out on their writing careers, and pieces read out range from completed pieces to work in progress for which the authors are seeking feedback. It all makes for an enjoyable evening’s entertainment.

  • Each session starts at 7pm and the cost of entry is £3 paid on the door
  • A share of the proceeds is donated to Darlington for Culture to help further its work supporting arts and culture in the town
  • Dates for 2019: 25th April; Darlington Arts Festival special 19th May; 30th May; 27th June; 26th September; 31st October; 28th November

Writers meet
Bennet House Writers meet every Monday at 10.30am at Age UK, Bradbury House, Beaumont Street West, Darlington DLI 5SX. The group read and discuss new and old work from members that includes poetry, short stories and novels.

Further details can be obtained from Mary Sweeten on 01325 283401.


The Bridge Centre for Visual Arts

Portrait Painting Workshop at The Bridge: Enjoying Sky Arts ‘Portrait Artist of the Year’? Learn how to paint in acrylics and oils from your own photograph with artist Jo Pickering.

Detailed step-by-step tuition – suitable for beginners.One-day workshop takes place on Saturday 25th May 10am-3pm.

Includes sandwich lunch tea coffee and homemade cakes!

  • Cost: £45 with own materials; £55 for canvas and all materials provided
  • Contact: Jo on 07930 422041 or jowpickering@gmail.com to book

The Bridge Centre for Visual Arts launches its range of spring courses, term started 14th January 2019.

Check The Bridge website for start dates and prices.

The Bridge Centre is located at the junction of Yarm Road and Hundens Lane DL1 1ED and runs programmes of 10-week courses in a variety of arts media throughout the year as well as a programme of exhibitions by local artists and art groups.

The Bridge houses a variety of local groups and is available for private hire.

Rejig’s Skills Courses take place at South Park Education Centre, Darlington, £25, includes materials and light refreshments.

Visit the website www.luckyfisharts.co.uk/courses

Meet, Make, Mend: provides drop-in sewing sessions throughout the week covering all sorts of skills, from quilting, to clothes making, and beyond. For more information visit the website www.luckyfisharts.co.uk

Knitting Café
The Knitting Cafe holds its Monday night sessions at Lingfield Point, off McMullen Road, taking the craft of knitting home to the site. The Café meets at Lingfield House on the site which was home to Patons and Baldwins, at one time a leading manufacturer of knitting yarn in Darlington. The Monday evening sessions are designed to introduce people to knitting, and also for experienced exponents of the pastime, and take place between 7-9pm. Sessions cost £3. For more information, contact Becky on 07550 002773.


Morris dance team seeks members

The Cotswold Morris Team/Black Diamond Mixed Cotswold Morris is seeking new members.

Named after one of the first steam locomotives to operate on the Darlington and Stockton Railway/Black Diamond, this new Cotswold Morris team is based in Darlington.

Dancing traditional dances from the Cotswold villages, this team comprises of both women and men.

They practise in the upstairs room of the Voodoo Cafe Bar on Skinnergate in Darlington from 7.30pm until about 9.30pm.

They welcome any dancers and musicians who would like to join them and if you’re not a dancer or musician then you are still more than welcome to come and join and learn these traditional dances.

Harlequin Women’s Morris

Harlequin Women’s Morris meet at Village Hall The Green, Cleasby, N Yorks DL2 2QZ, on Tuesdays from 7.30pm-9.30pm.

New dancers and/or musicians welcome to try this traditional English (North West) morris dancing. It is fun and helps keep mind and body fit; comfortable shoes and clothes are all that’s needed. First week is free, then £4 per week.

For further information call 01325 465129 or 0795 1251004 or email harlequin.morris@gmail.com

6th Street Swing

Transport yourself back to the swinging world of the 1940s and learn the dance sensations that took the era by storm.

6th Street Swing are a group of local swing dancers keen to encourage more people to take up this fun and sociable partnered dance style. We run informal beginners classes weekly as well as evening socials every few months. No partner is required.

Tuesdays 7.30 – 8.30 followed by social dancing at Voodoo Cafe, Skinnergate

Cost: £3 – first class free

Contact: Angeline a.unique.rose@gmail.com

Love Tango Darlington

This group dances both traditional Argentine and modern Nuevo Tango.

Class every Thursday 7.30pm followed by dancing until late with John Paul Tango at Haughton Le Skerne Working Men’s Club, 25 Haughton Green, Darlington DL1 2DD.

More details: call 01325 468738 or visit group’s Facebook page.


Group piano lessons for adults

Lessons with Tracey Chad ALCM(TD) DipLCM(TD).

At The Forum, Borough Road.

For information and to book, email traceychad1@gmail.com




Darlington Amateur Gardening Club: meets in Bondgate Methodist Church, Winston Street entrance, and the talk starts at about 7.20pm, after tea/coffee. For club information contact the club secretary on 01325 468870.

The Campaign to Protect Rural England, CPRE Darlington: meets in the Upstairs Restaurant, Dolphin Centre, Darlington, at 6.30pm. Meetings are informal and usually held the third Tuesday in the month. They cover mainly planning applications and so give the opportunity to air any views on issues which could affect your quality of life. Please ring 01325 485107 to check dates and inform them of your attendance.


The Friends of the Stockton & Darlington Railway were formed in 2013 to take forward ambitious plans to conserve and promote the 1825 line in the lead up to the celebrations of the 200th anniversary of the opening of the railway in 2025.

The Friends’ vision is to establish a walking and cycling rail trail using the route of the 1825 S&DR from Witton Park to Stockton on Tees.

More information is available on the Friends website www.sdr1825.co.uk/ Or at their Facebook page; where notice of regular meetings and events can be found www.facebook.com/groups/304912612980375/. The Friends hold a regular monthly meeting on the first Thursday of the month, 7.10pm, usually at Darlington Cricket Club, Feethams. Email info@sdr1825.co.uk for information.


National Council of Women Great Britain
The National Council of Women (NCW) wants to ensure that women play a full role in our society. In Darlington they meet on the fourth Tuesday of the month between 10am and midday at the Millennium Centre, All Saints Church, Ravensdale Road, Darlington DL3 8DT. They welcome women from around the wider area. There are also lots of opportunities to attend other discussions/seminars/meetings both locally and nationally during the year to keep up to date with what’s happening. Want to know more then check out the NCW website www.ncwgb.org or Twitter @NCWGB, call 01325 367375 or search for National Council of Women Great Britain on Facebook.

Darlington Keep Fit Association
Classes take place every Thursday evening from 7.30pm to 9pm at St Thomas Aquinas Church Hall, choreographed by Catherine Gilsenan; and every Tuesday evening from 7.30pm to 9pm at Sadberge Village Hall, choreographed by Margaret Marston. Both are qualified teachers with regularly updated training, costs are £3.50 per session with a view to membership if liked. Ages range from 18 years upwards.