August 22, 2023


Taking place on Saturday 23 and Sunday 24 September between 11am and 4pm, Barnsley Garden Party will take place in The Glass Works Square and Barnsley Civic’s Mandela Gardens. Visitors will be treated to a weekend filled with culture, thrills, comedy, and music.

The event, which first took place a decade ago, is now co-produced between Barnsley Civic and The Glass Works. It is being delivered in partnership with Without Walls, a consortium of festivals and arts organisations, bringing fantastic outdoor arts to people in towns and cities across England.

With an exciting and eclectic mix of performances taking place over the weekend, Barnsley Garden Party is not to be missed.


Events on Saturday 23rd September take place across The Glass Works Square and Mandela Gardens. With just a minute’s walk separating the two, you don’t have to miss a thing!

The line-up for The Glass Works Square includes:


11.00am – Plot 17 – Join underground hip-hop hero Kenny Baraka AKA The Green Man and DJ D’Vo as they work to save the environment one sick track at a time. PLOT17 is an interactive mobile eco block party arriving at the Library @ the Lightbox to officially launch Barnsley Libraries new Arts Council England’s National Portfolio Organisation programme.

11:45am – Mr Wilson’s Second Liners – Bursting with colour and sound Mr Wilson’s Second Liners are an anarchic New Orleans-style brass band. Playing a rousing selection of 1990s dance classics, they are guaranteed to rouse audiences young and old into a joyful frenzy.

12:00pm –  Eko – A 4-metre-tall sentient sea giant from the not-too-distant future. Risen from the deep ocean, Eko tells its magical walkabout story through dance, movement and masterful puppetry.

12.30pm – Timeless – Four performers dance, leap, gracefully balance and throw themselves with acrobatic prowess around, on and inside a rotating 7-metre-high hourglass. Timeless is a spectacular story of civilisation as we know it and its fragile relationship with time and nature.

1.15pm – Frumptarn Guggenband – Mixing brass with punchy percussion, Barnsley’s very own Frumptarn Guggenband play music guaranteed to get you on your feet. The band brings their brand new ‘Starman’ costumes to the Garden Party for an out-of-this-world musical experience.

2.00pm – Plot 17

3.00pm – Frumptarn Guggenband

3.00pm – Eko

3.30pm – Timeless


The line-up for Saturday in Mandela Gardens is as follows:

11.00am – SEED – An inspiring rock’n’roll journey from small acorns to great oaks for all the family. Join Wilford planting trees where he shouldn’t – living in his shed, on the run from his past and his arch-enemies, SLUGS!

11.30am – Frumptarn Guggenband

12.00pm – For the Love of Stuff – Through a combination of physical theatre and song ‘For the Love of Stuff’ tells the story of a fantastical future world where the stuff we own has become more important than what we feel. This new work is a story of redemption and hope that will leave audiences moved, thrilled, and inspired by its vibrancy and emotional breadth.

12.45pm – The Maniax – Based on a Houdini-style escape The Maniax show is packed with stunts, illusions and great comic routines. This spectacular comedy act has toured all over the world and is performed by Markmark Productions who are based at Barnsley Civic.

1.30pm – Eko

1.30pm – Mr Wilson’s Second Liners 

2.15pm – SEED

2.45pm – The Maniax

Saturday 23rd also sees the opening of Barnsley Civic’s newest exhibit, ‘I’m Sorry’. Artist Annable McCourt invites you to take a pilgrimage into the safe space of ‘I’m Sorry’, a multi-sensory transformational installation to embark on a deeply personal journey, before returning to daily life. I’m Sorry will be open from 23rd September 2023 to 20th January 2024 in the gallery.


The fun doesn’t stop on Saturday and continues on Sunday 24th September in The Glass Works Square, with even more acts and performances that are sure to wow and entertain visitors of all ages.

11.00am – Grow Your Own! – Fresh from the potting shed these comedy gardeners provide skilful, wholesome fun – from field to plate! Expect juggling, comedy cookery and disappearing slugs in a show that’s even more spectacular than Gardener’s Question Time!

11.30am –  TOAST – A beautiful big-hearted extravaganza of food, dance, live music, songs and tales from around the world. Join the Guild of Toasters and dance with them through the seasons and enjoy their treats in a love song to community.

11.45am – Enchanted Flower Globe – Be drawn into the magical world of Floris, the mystical flower nymph who lives inside her magical microclimate. See the Enchanted Flower Globe – filled with butterflies and charm, magic and wonder – glide around The Glass Works Square.

12.00pm – Seeing Red – This modern retelling of the Little Red Riding Hood tale is full of red-related surprises and original puppet characters – all crammed into one large, furry suitcase. Seeing Red reminds all children that little girls have just as much courage as anyone else… including the big bad wolf!

12.30pm – Timeless

1.00pm – Grow Your Own!

1.30pm – Enchanted Flower Globe

1.30pm – Seeing Red

2.00pm – TOAST

2.30pm – Seeing Red

3.00pm – Grow Your Own!

3.15pm – Enchanted Flower Globe

3.30pm – Timeless


Anthony Baker, Chief Executive at Barnsley Civic, said: “We are thrilled to announce our partnership with The Glass Works to deliver the Barnsley Garden Party.

“Prepare for a weekend of sheer spectacle with extraordinary live performances by the UK’s finest street performers and outdoor artists. This free family event is not to be missed.

“Our resident theatre company, Markmark, will be enchanting audiences with ‘The Maniax,’ a spectacular comedy performance featuring Houdini-style escape artists showcasing daring stunts, illusions, and brilliant comic routines.

“Thanks to the generous support from Without Walls, Barnsley town centre will come alive with an incredible display of high-quality outdoor arts, making it an unforgettable weekend for all.”

Another stand-out act, Timeless, will see four performers dance, leap, gracefully balance and throw themselves with acrobatic prowess around, on and inside a rotating 7-metre-high hourglass in The Glass Works Square.

Music fans will also have the chance to enjoy Mr Wilson’s Second Liners, an anarchic New Orleans-style brass band that plays a rousing selection of 1990s dance classics.

The Garden Party is definitely an event not to be missed.

Cllr Robert Frost, Cabinet Spokesperson for Regeneration and Culture at Barnsley Council, said: “This year’s Garden Party promises to be another fantastic event for the town centre this year.

“The Glass Works has brought a vibrant sense of community back to the town centre and events like The Garden Party really put Barnsley on the map. It’s brilliant to see the improvements being made to Eldon Street and the reopening of the Civic’s historic façade in the coming months. This two-day cultural festival will bring the whole town together. The weekend will be full of fun and what’s even better is that the entire event is free for all to enjoy.”


As always, The Glass Works Car Park is free after 5 pm every day, and free for up to three hours at the weekend! There are 475 spaces, 20 parent and child bays, 28 free disabled bays available to Blue Badge holders, and 6EV parking bays, all open 24 hours a day. The car park can be found on Lambra Road, just off the Alhambra roundabout, and can be found by following the postcode S70 1SF. For more information, click here.

The Glass Works is also ideally located next to the Barnsley Interchange and Barnsley train station, just a two-minute walk from each! With regular buses from all over Barnsley, and trains travelling from Sheffield and Leeds, visiting by public transport couldn’t be easier.