Knaresborough. A town of history. A town of community. A town of uniqueness. A town of tradition. Knaresborough has many annual traditions and events, but have you heard about these unique, enjoyable and popular traditions hosted by the town?


To kick off the start of a new year, the first event is held: The Duck Race. Every year on New Year's Day, the family event consists of 5000 rubber ducks being dropped from the high bridge into the River Nidd, where they race to the finish line at Marigolds Café. With many prizes to be offered and a fun day for the community. With profits being raised for the local charity Henshaw's.


Perhaps the biggest event of Knaresborough that sees the streets be completely filled with people from both the town and others from surrounding areas is the Great Knaresborough Bed Race. Held every second weekend of June, the day starts with a parade to display the decorated beds that follow the theme of that year, alongside seeing other entertainers like musicians and dancers. Then finally runners take on the 2.4 mile course around the hilly terrain while pushing their beds and finish by crossing the River Nidd, all while the community cheers them on. With lots of fun throughout the day for everyone, of every age - from games, to food stalls, to lots of alcohol for the adults. This event has been held every year since 1966 (minus the years affected by the pandemic). The day is organised by the Knaresborough Lions to meet local charity needs. In fact, bed racing is so popular that it has spread across the world - having started in Knaresborough. 


During the festive Christmas period, Knaresborough see around 70 decorated Christmas trees all at St John's Church. But not just any Christmas trees. They are all largely unique and are decorated by local groups, clubs, schools and businesses. When you go to the Christmas tree festival, you see all kinds of decorated trees - some not at all what you would expect - thus adding to the magical and incredible atmosphere. While there are opportunities to donate to the church and charity, admission to the festival is free.


A long lasting Boxing Day event, sees the competitive side of Knaresborough in full force: Tug O’ War. Two teams face each other, each from opposite sides of the bank of the River Nidd. The losing team faces sliding down the mud - and in the most entertaining outcomes fall into the River. Multiple teams take part in this competition adding to the thrill of the day. Lots of Knaresborough residents come together to watch this event and cheer for the side they choose.


Knaresborough - a small town, with a close knit community, and multiple anticipated and vastly enjoyed annual traditions.