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Stockton International Riverside Festival: Your guide to all things SIRF18

30 July 2018

WONDERING what to see and where at the 31st Stockton International Riverside Festival? Then wonder no more, because this guide is just what you need...

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What is SIRF?

Stockton International Riverside Festival has been bringing free theatre, circus, dance and musical performances to Stockton town centre for three decades, and with more than 150 shows, this year's SIRF will be the biggest ever!

When is it on?

SIRF18 takes place from Thursday August 2 to Sunday August 5 with lots to see from 12.30pm each day (12noon on Saturday).

What can you see?

As you might guess from our 'Five SIRF highlights to enjoy' piece, no two days are the same at SIRF!

There's a fire-filled world premiere and frequent family fun, with this year's programme featuring a Finnish circus, juggling postmen, a performance from an open top bus and of course, SIRF's ever popular Community Carnival.

If you want a sneak peek of the kind of thing to expect, the videos from our SIRF teaser are sure to whet the appetite.

Alternatively, pick up a programme from the Rediscover Shop on the High Street aka 'SIRF Central' or access an easy to follow online version.

SIRF after dark

There's something very special about SIRF's night time shows; they bring something of a wow factor to proceedings.

And there's a real treat in store this year in the shape of the world premiere of Periplum's 'The Glass Ceiling' - a large scale show marking 100 years since some British women were given the vote.

Inspired by suffragettes and suffragists this ambitious outdoor show uses dance, physical and aerial performance to tell the story about the women who took direct action to gain equality. You can see it at Trinity Green at 10pm on Friday and Saturday.

Getting there

If you can get here by public transport, that's great! But if you do intend to visit by car, please note there will be a number of road and car park closures throughout Stockton town centre while the festival takes place.

Riverside, Parliament Street, High Street, Municipal and Bishop Street car parks will be closed at various times.

The A1305 Riverside from North Shore gyratory to Tower Street and Stockton High Street are among the roads affected. See the SIRF website's visitor information page for the full list - you can even download a map showing where you can park.


SIRF has a proud history of supporting disabled and disabled-friendly artists and there's also a range of services on offer to help people with disabilities access performance sites and accessible viewing areas.

These include easy access wristbands and a 'buddy' service which provides visitors with disabilities with a guide to escort them around key performance sites. Early booking is advised.

Where can I find out more information?

Want to keep up to speed on all things SIRF? Then visit the website SIRF.