There has been an annual gathering to mark the story of the Tolpuddle Martyrs since 1930s. It began as a Sunday afternoon event with wreaths laid on the grave of James Hammett, followed by a procession of banners and speeches. 

Today, the annual event sees thousands of trade unionists from around the UK and the world descend on the small village of Tolpuddle in Dorset to celebrate the memory of the Tolpuddle Martyrs and the legacy they left behind. 

The Tolpuddle Martyrs' Festival reflects the spirit of those prepared to stand up and be counted, and for those just learning about its history. It is a joyful celebration of solidarity.

Read the Story of the Tolpuddle Martyrs here.

The dates for 2020 Festival are: Friday 17- Sunday 19 July 2020




Don't forget you can keep up to date by joining Tolpuddle Martyrs Facebook group


What's on

The weekend-long, family-friendly festival is bursting with topical discussions and lectures from a wide variety of speakers.

There is plenty of music to suit all tastes, food stalls and campaign groups, trade union led activities, a delightful children's area, a programme of radical films in a vintage mobile cinema, comedy, drama, and much more!

On Sunday, after the wreath-laying ceremony, many more thousands of people arrive in the village to participate in the Grand Procession. The highlight of the Festival produces a sea of colourful trade union banners, bands and protests songs. Everyone has some reason to join the procession and everyone is welcome.

Because of the history of the traditional rally, we are determined to keep the Sunday free to attend - apart from car parking charges. The cost of the Festival is kept as low as possible thanks to the generous support of the TUC, trade unions and partners. 

If you want to get involved with the Festival, you can apply through our website to: