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The Asylum Steampunk Festival 

Evening Programme 2023


There are some important changes to the process for buying evening tickets this year - so please do not assume that the process will be the same as last year.

Like last year we will be holding evening events at the Drill Hall and the Engine Shed, but this year we are also excited to be able to hold some of our evening events back at the Assembly Rooms, which has always been a very firm favourite of many Asylum attendees.

The most up to date information we have about the evening events will all be on this website page, which will be updated as more information comes to light or if we need to make any changes to previously released information.

Under each event on this page you will find a link to where you can buy tickets.


The links to events at the Engine Shed and Assembly Rooms will take you to the Ministry of Steampunk's ticketing page on Ticket Tailor. For events at the Drill Hall the link will take you to the Drill Hall's own ticketing page. 

As usual, evening festivities will begin with the Advance Guard Party which will be held at the Assembly Rooms; if you come to the Advance Guard you will be able to collect your wristbands in advance of the main event opening on Friday.


On Friday evening you have the choice of Lady Elsie's Fashion Show at the Assembly Rooms or the Ministry's  fourth Decodance with the Retrobates at the Drill Hall. AND MAYBE SOMETHING ELSE?


Saturday night you have three events to choose from - the Grand Asylum Ball at the Engine Shed, the Major's 'Folk Singing' evening at the Drill Hall (which is actually a Burlesque show - just don't tell the Major) and a new feature for this year, the 'Asylum Introducing' music event at the Assembly Rooms. 

You will find Sunday night's entertainments every bit as varied, with the three-headliner 'Time Travellers' music gig at the Engine Shed, the Major's Soiree variety show at the Drill Hall and a very special showing of a new film of The Hunting of the Snark at the Assembly Rooms. 


Finally, for those who don't want to go home after the closing ceremony on Monday afternoon, Monday evening will be the traditional Dead Dog Party at the Assembly Rooms. 

Thursday Evening 

The Advance Guard

The Assembly Rooms
doors 7pm | event start 7:30pm | age 14+

Buy Tickets to the Advance Guard

The now traditional first evening event of the Asylum returns to the Assembly Rooms this year for a fabulous evening of socialising and the opportunity to collect your wristbands and Asylum merchadise.

Can it really be a year since we were last all together? It seems hardly possible...

There might be 'a bit of a quiz' tonight, but XXXXXXXXXXX



Friday Evening 

Lady Elsie's Fashion Show

The Assembly Rooms
doors 7pm | event start | age 14+

Blurb about the event....





Buy Tickets to the Fashion Show


The Drill Hall
doors 7pm | event start | age 14+

Modern songs in a vintage style? Why, yes please!

For the 4th Asylum Decodance we are massively excited to welcome the Retrobates back to play for us.


If you were at the Asylum Ball in 2022 you will know exactly why we are so excited. Not only did they fill the dance floor for the whole of their set, they even played a new version of the Metalliconga - to Master of Puppets!

The Retrobates are an 8-piece vocal-fronted band who specialise in performing hits from the 80's to the present day in the vintage music styles of the 20'3 up to the 60's. 

As for what to wear to the Decodance, the choice is entirely yours. You can come in steampunk, dieselpunk, 20's or 30's style or whatever takes your fancy. But be sure to wear or bring along your dancing shoes. 

Buy Tickets to the Decodance
Saturday Evening 

The Grand Asylum Ball

The Engine Shed
doors 7pm | event start 7:30pm | age 14+

After the meal we will have music from the incredible Wight Hot Pipes who you may have seen perform previously at The Town That Never Was at Blists Hill or at The Asylum in 2019.


The Wight Hot Pipes are a five-piece celtic rock band who playing awesome covers from all genres and are guaranteed to help you burn off a few calories on the dance floor after your meal.

Did someone just mention burning? They're called the Wight 'Hot' pipes for a reason; if you dont know why already, prepare to be blown away on the night. 

When you book for the Asylum Ball please note carefully your meal choice and seating preferences. You will be choosing your meal for the event at the time of booking and that will also be your opportunity to say if you want to sit on the same table as anyone else. We will then do our very best to accomodate your seating preferences. 

Important meal information

Buy Tickets to the Grand Asylum Ball

Last year's Asylum Ball was a sell-out. We have arranged to increase the capacity a little for this year, but we don't recomend waiting around too long before you buy your tickets for 2023!

The Ball will include an XXX course meal prepared and served by the in-house team at the Engine Shed. 

Oh Dear! What would the Major say?! - The Asylum Burlesque Show is Back!!

The Drill Hall
doors 7:30pm | event start 8pm | age 18+

'The Major' says (cough, cough) it's been far too long since we hosted one of his favourite 'folk singing' evenings at The Asylum, so please brace yourselves for an evening like no other.

If you identify as 'The Major', please scroll past the following information as it definitely is not for your eyes. You have been warned...

If you do NOT identify as 'The Major' then just in case you don't already know, when we say 'folk singing' we actually mean an evening of Burlesque performances to blow your socks off.


Well someone's socks off, anyway.

This year we are delighted that the fabulous Scarlet Butterfly will be curating an evening of the most sumptuous talent on the Drill Hall stage. Be sure to check back on this page for further anouncements as we gradually 'reveal' our performers for this year.

Oh, and be warned; it may get very 'hot' in the Drill Hall tonight. 

Buy Tickets to the Burlesque Show

Asylum Introducing

The Assembly Rooms
doors 7pm | event start 7:30pm | age 14+

Over the years the Asylum Steampunk Festival has hosted many fantastic steampunk musical performances - from previously unheard artrists to global stars such as Steam Powered Giraffe and Abney Park. 

This event will showcase a number of performers who have never played The Asylum before in the beautiful surroundings of the Assembly Rooms. 

The evening will be compered by none other than the Cogkneys who together with our esteemed audience will be sure to put the new artists at their ease.

Each audience member will be given a token on arrival and on departure will be asked to deposit the token into one of a series of boxes bearing the artist's names. The artist(s) who achieve most votes will then be invited to perform as part of the Major's Soiree at next year's Asylum.

Be sure to check back on this page to learn the identity of the artists who will be performing at this new event once the selection process is complete.

Buy Tickets to Asylum Introducing
Sunday Evening 

The Major's Soiree

The Drill Hall
doors 7pm | event start 7:30pm | age 14+

The Major is a simple soul. All he asks in life is to host a variety evening with a selection of the finest performers in the Steampunk world. This year's soiree will be no exception...

Madam Misfit

Madam Misfit's music is a concoction of electroswing, dub step, funk and chaphop, all wrapped up with humour and pizzazz. She has been wooing Steampunk (and other) audiences around the UK for some while now, giving the (ahem) 'gentlemen' of chaphop a fair run for their money. We last saw her play a fine set at the Asylum Decodance in 2022 and can't wait to hear her again at this years' Major's Soiree.   

mm2 steve.jpg

Public service announcement

Please do not under ANY circumstance encourage The Major to do 'The Bear Dance' or it could all end up very messy. You have been warned. 

Buy Tickets to The Major's Soiree

Time Travellers - A night of not one, not two, but three headlining bands

The Engine Shed
doors 7pm | event start 7:30pm | age 14+

Sometimes at The Asylum we put on a headlining band at the Time Travellers gig with one or two support acts, but this year we decided to go not one, but two steps further - by putting on three headline bands in one night.

So who are the bands? OK, in no particular roder we have....

In the '2 Legs' category, we have...

Thomas Benjamin Wild Esq.

In the '4 Legs' category, we have... 

Frenchy & The Punk

And performing in the '6 Legs' category, we have...

Victor and the Bully

Buy Tickets to The Major's Soiree


Monday Evening 

The Dead Dog Party with The Captain's Beard

The Assembly Rooms
doors 7pm | event start 7:30pm | age 14+

The Dead Dog Party started off as a get-together of people who had attended the Asylum and had such a good time that they didn't want to go home after the closing ceremony. It has since become a firm part of the event - a matching bookend to the 'Advance Guard' event on Thursday evening, held for those who can't wait for the event to start on Friday.


This year we are thrilled to have The Captains Beard back to play for us again. Last year they kicked off the Asylum at the Advance Guard with their inexhaustible energy, wonderful musicianship, great songs and humour, all with a definite piratical twist.

As usual the evening will also include a charity auction and will be a relaxed affair. Don't be shocked if you catch site of one or two people wearing their pyjamas!  

Buy Tickets to The Dead Dog Party
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