Toggle menu

Tamfest is back - and it's spookier than ever!

Image with text saying news

The spookiest festival in South Ayrshire returns this month. Tamfest is back with a bang after being online only over the last two years due to the covid pandemic.

The festival will transform Ayr town centre into a fright-fest on Sunday 30 October, with street performers, artists, face painters, musicians, pop-up stalls and street traders, to name a few.

Witches, ghouls and goblins will line the streets surrounding the three live events stages, which will bring live music, drama and puppetry. With plenty of acts and activities that all the family can enjoy, this year promises to be the best yet.

South Ayrshire's unique Hallowe'en festivity will also take over a range of other venues from this week, including Rozelle House. There will be some special performances in the gallery - which you do need to book in advance - featuring four characters who'll share their creepy and chilling tales of life, death, murder, and myth.

Leading Scottish portraiture and figurative artist, Craig Campbell's famous Tam o 'Shanter series, will also be on display in the house. The exhibit will boast a selection of vibrant images depicting the most epic of poems by Robert Burns including a few new, and yet unseen, original paintings.

Just outside in Rozelle Park, The Devil from Robert Burns most epic of poems- Tam o' Shanter, has had enough of the Auld Kirk and will venture out to the park to claim the ponds as his own. He'll invite ghosts, ghouls, witches and warlocks to his new playground - so beware all ye who dare to enter! The Devil will also venture further afield to The McKechnie Institute in Girvan, and the first floor of the gallery will be transformed into a haunting display of wicked revelry.

Councillor Alec Clark, South Ayrshire Council's Portfolio Holder for Tourism, Culture and Rural Affairs said: "Hallowe'en in Scotland, and especially in Ayrshire, is all about witches, warlocks and ghouls. Burns' writing about Tam o`Shanter showed this when he wrote:

"ah ,Tam! ah, Tam! thou'll get thy fairin'

In hell they'll roast thee like a herrin'"

"Also, as vividly portrayed in Goudie`s Paintings, when Tam approached Kirk Alloway, where after partaking of some refreshments, he could see the hellish vision of witches and warlocks dancing a reel to the Devils Hornpipes.

"Tamfest makes a play on all of this rich Ayrshire History to make October and particularly Hallowe'en an exciting Ghoulish fun filled time, with events and participation for all to enjoy."

Tamfest Festival Director, Meredith McCrindle, said: "We unashamedly want to bring a buzz back to Ayr town centre and to get families out together having fun. Hallowe'en provides a great opportunity, especially through the link with Burns' iconic poem, Tam o' Shanter; not least since we are right in the heart of where the action is set.

"Come and see the Brig where Tam's mare lost her tail to the witches, listen to live music, eat some street food, walk your dog along the Trail of Terror, browse the stalls, get your face painted, or just soak up the carnival atmosphere. When we say Tamfest offers something for everyone, we really mean it."

South Ayrshire Council are the main sponsor of Tamfest, which is run by Ayrshire Festivals SCIO. If you'd like to book any of the events mentioned above, visit

A full list of events can also be found at