Stamford is well endowed with sport, recreational and entertainment activities. It has, for example, an arts centre, more than a score of pubs and a wide range of restaurants and cafes.
Set in a group of historic buildings, the Arts Centre and Theatre includes also a ballroom, a gallery bar and coffee shops, artists’ studios and several function rooms. The Theatre was first opened in 1768 and, following restoration in 1976, is one of the few 18th century playhouses still serving its original purpose. The Ballroom, too, has been in use since the 18th century for concerts and dances.
Today the entire complex offers a wealth of entertainment throughout the year, including live theatre, cinema, recitals and artistic workshops. The Arts Centre also houses the Tourist Information Centre.
In addition, the previous Corn Exchange, situated on Broad Street, has been restored and now houses a second theatre in the town and is home to a wide range of music and dramatic groups.
The Stamford Shakespeare Company stages a season of plays during the summer at the nearby Rutland Open Air Theatre at Tolethorpe Hall whilst another annual event is the town’s Mid-Lent Fun Fair that has its origins in the original Stamford Fair which dates back to Norman times. It lasts for a week and fills the streets and squares of the centre with stalls, amusements and ‘all the fun of the fair’. Another annual event is the Stamford Festival which is held in July with exhibitions, musical and stage events at various venues in the town, and a varied programme of events, festivals and entertainments are held in the Town throughout the year.
Burghley ParkSports, and other outdoor activities include walking in the riverside meadows and Burghley Park, which ihosts the internationally famous horse trials, a game fair and many other events. In the town centre is the recreation ground with tennis courts, a putting green, a children’s playground and Victorian bandstand, and there is a golf club in Burghley Park.
Also available are well established football, rugby cricket, and running clubs. Fishing is available on the Welland, and swimming is available at the town’s Leisure Pool.