Make the Most of May Day in Holywood!

Wednesday 26th April 2023

Ards and North Down’s May Day celebrations get into full swing this Monday 1 May with a packed programme full of fun for all the family in Holywood!

Girls dressed up in colourful outfits for dancing around the Maypole.

Organised by Ards and North Down Borough Council in partnership with Holywood and District Community Council as well as Holywood Chamber of Commerce, a host of exciting activities will help to keep the family entertained on May Day.

Centred around Holywood’s Maypole, the free family fun day will see a number of much-loved favourites returning between 10am and 4pm.

Traditional events, organised by Holywood and District Community Council, will kick-start the day with a Bonny Baby competition at 10.30am, the crowning of the May Queen at 10.45am, and a fancy-dress competition at 12.30pm. Children are invited to come along dressed as Kings and Queens in this Coronation year.

The annual choreographed dance routine, performed by local school children around the country’s only maypole, takes place at 11am and 1pm while ‘Jump, Jiggle and Jive’ will also be on hand with their mini maypole for those little ones who are eager to have a go between 12 noon and 4pm.

Commercial stalls in the car park beside Stoker’s Halt will add to the atmosphere while the children’s funfair and an ‘Art on the Rails’ display of contemporary arts and crafts will be located at Church Road and High Street.

Combined with a selection of market stalls housed between Holywood’s eateries and boutiques, the town will provide a fabulous place to celebrate May Day on Monday 1 May!

Key Attractions

  • 10am-4pm: Bric-a-brac Stalls, Artisan Food and Crafts, Children’s Entertainment (High Street and Hibernia Street)
  • 10.30am: Bonny Baby Competition (High Street, Presbyterian Church)
  • 10.45am: Crowning of the May Queen (Maypole)
  • 11am: Maypole dancing (Maypole)
  • 11.45am: Sullivan Junior Choir 11.45am (Maypole)
  • 12.30pm: Fancy Dress Competition (Maypole) Children who would like to take part should meet at the Maypole at 12.15pm.
  • 1pm: Maypole dancing (Maypole)
  • 1.45pm: McElhinney School of Dance (Maypole)

For more information, go to Merry May Day - Family Fun in Holywood, Northern Ireland - Ards & North Down (

Please note, road closures will be in place - Holywood Town Centre will be closed from 6am-6pm including High Street, Church Road and Shore Road.