The Durham Miners Gala 2020 date should be the first one you circle in your calendar as it's an event not to be missed. So when is it?

The Durham Miners Gala takes place every summer and the date always seems to come around quickly.

Durham Miners Gala 2020 has since been cancelled due to coronavirus. You can read all about it in our updated story. For full council services during the outbreak see our Coronavirus roundup page.

When is Durham Miners Gala 2020?

The Durham Miners Gala date is Saturday July 11 2020. 2020 will mark the 136th year that Durham Miners Gala has been held. A good way of always knowing the date is that the Big Meeting is always held on the second Saturday in July.

If the Durham Miners Gala 2020 is your first time there, check out our guide for Big Meeting newbies.

If you need accommodation when you come to the Big Meeting, a cheap option is to use the official Durham Miners Gala campsite. You can find the details in our Durham Miners Gala campsite story.

Read next: Going to the Durham Miners Gala cathedral service? Here's what you need to know

What time should I go to Durham Miners Gala?

With so many moving parts, the Durham Miners Gala start time isn't an exact science; there's no specific start time, end time or place where it all happens. However, there are a couple of key times and places.

Durham Marketplace is the first port of call for the mine and union banners, which in years gone by would have begun their own procession to Durham from whichever community they represented. The banners will then begin making their way towards Durham Racecourse from about 8.30am and is a great experience for families to watch.

Read next: Love big events? Check out our Durham Festivals page

The banners will go to Durham Racecourse via the County Hotel, where dignitaries will stand on the balcony to hear the bands play and see the banners. Although it gets busy, this is a good place to stand for a short while and enjoy the atmosphere before you head to the Racecourse. This can continue for three or fours hours and so you should be able to see it until 11.30am or 12.30pm.

The next time that's important is the official opening of the meeting, which takes place on the Racecourse at 1pm. This is when the platform party arrives and the chairman opens the meeting, before the speeches begin.

After the speeches, you can head up towards Durham Cathedral along with several selected banners and bands for the Miners' Service.

The Racecourse will also be full of marquees where you can find stalls from a wide range of organisations. There will also be fairground rides, and you can see the banners up close too.

Durham Miners Gala road closures will begin at 6am on Saturday July 11 2020.