Ground breaking outdoor theatre comes to Keynsham’s Festival of Nature - June 18th 2017

Ground breaking outdoor theatre comes to Keynsham’s Festival of Nature

Festival returns to Keynsham on June 18th 2017

One of the UK’s most inventive outdoor arts companies is coming to Keynsham this year for the Festival of Nature on June 18, 2017.

Desperate Men has been enthralling audiences in the UK and internationally for the last 37 years and will be performing on the Memorial bandstand in Memorial Park at 1pm and 4pm.

The show, called We are Ducks, will be a compilation of natural history stories inspired by the group’s many riverside jaunts up the rivers Avon, Severn and Wye over the last 10 years. “Expect charm, song and pertinent silliness,” says the group’s co-artistic director, Jon Beedell.

The performers will stay in character and host the day, telling stories and encouraging visitors to connect with nature around the park.

Savita Custead, festival director, said: “Desperate Men are a perfect partner for the festival. They are adept at encouraging audiences to ask serious questions about the world in a really fun and engaging way. They are incredibly inventive, sometimes mischievous and even surreal, and I know they are going to put on a splendid show for everyone.”

Alongside this, there will be a host of exhibitors and hands-on activities for people to get involve in, including mini-BioBlitzes, where people will be invited to find as many species as possible during the day, treasure hunts and water testing.

One of the highlights will be a ‘cinema in a campervan’ which will start its journey in Bristol on June 8, before coming to Keynsham on June 18. Bristol and Bath’s waterscapes are an important feature of the Festival of Nature and the campervan cinema will be showing films of stories of the River Avon.

Fondly known as Lionel, the VW T25 campervan is decorated as an imaginary spaceship and festival-goers are invited to step on board and enjoy this unique cinema-going experience.

Other exhibitors include regional and national environmental groups including Keynsham Avon Wildlife Trust, Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust, National Trust, Natural England, The Bristol GREENPEACE Group and Butterfly Conservation. For details of others who will be attending, go to the Keynsham exhibitor list.

The Keynsham festival is from 11am to 5pm at Keynsham Memorial Park and is a free event.

Savita continued: “This year’s event will build on last year’s pilot Keynsham Festival of Nature. Many people last year wanted the event to be longer and with more activities to occupy them for the whole day, so we have worked hard to create a more varied programme. We will be encouraging people to take action for nature, which could include building a habitat, encouraging wildlife in the garden, volunteering or recording species.”

The Keynsham Festival of Nature is part of the two-week long Festival of Nature, the UK’s biggest free celebration of the natural world. The main Bristol weekend takes place on June 10 and 11 before it culminates in Bath on June 25 at Royal Parade Gardens.

The festival’s first ever Bath-based BioBlitz, the largest ever wildlife survey to be held in the city, will take place at the National Trust’s Bushey Norwood site on June 23 and 24 and it is hoped that 1,000 different species can be found in 24 hours.

A festival programme can be downloaded here

All events are free to enter, but some may require advance booking so visit for a full listing and more information. You can also follow the festival on Twitter: @FestofNature and on Facebook: @BristolFON. 

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