Showing posts with label British. Show all posts
Showing posts with label British. Show all posts

Ten Years of Camp Bestival

DD and I started our festival forays with Eastern Haze in Suffolk in 2007. 

Sadly that year Eastern Haze suffered dreadfully from bad weather and the organisers wound it up, never to return. But DD and I were hooked. Hooked on the mud, the toilets, the late nights, the friendly festival goers, the laughter and the music. So I looked about for a new festival, suitable for an eight year old and her mum to attend and I found Camp Bestival. Billed as a cross between a festival and a holiday camp, with a mix of music and kids activities it sounded perfect, and so it turned out. 

We went to the 2010 festival, and have been to every Camp Bestival since.

This year is the tenth Camp Bestival and the headliners have just been announced. (and yes I'm going to save that for later) It made me think back to previous year's headliners and who I would have picked for this year if I was asked to choose (I wasn't)

The first year of Camp Bestival 2008, which we didn't attend, was by all accounts a bit of a steep learning curve for the organisers. But the headliners that year included Chuck Berry, Flaming Lips, and Kate Nash.

In 2009 the headliners included Florence and the Machine, PJ Harvey, Will Young, Tinchy Stryder,  Kid Creole and the Coconuts, and Goldie Lookin' Chain, I confess I'm rather sad I missed 2009!

In 2010, the first year we attended the headliners included Madness, Calvin Harris, Billy Bragg, The Human League, Ellie Goulding, Tinie Tempah (who swore hilariously)  and The Cuban Brothers and it was brilliant! Madness were so much fun, my favourite memory of the festival was dancing with the kids, in the dark, with glowsticks all aglow

In 2011 we saw Blondie, Mark Ronson and the Business International, and Primal Scream. Other performers included ABC, The Wonder Stuff, House of Pain, Eliza Doolittle, Bad Shepherds, Easy Star All-Stars, though we missed a secret performance in the woods by Ed Sheeran!

In 2012 the headliners were  Kool and the Gang, Chic featuring Nile Rodgers, Hot Chip, The Happy Mondays, and Rizzle Kicks, and again we had a fab time dancing the night away.

In 2013 headliners included Levellers and Labrinth, Kid Creole and the Coconuts, The 1975 and Clean Bandit. But for some reason I recall less about the music that year - maybe we spent longer in the comedy tent.

In 2014 headliners James, De La Soul, and Basement Jaxx, were joined by Sinead O' Connor, The Cuban Brothers, Chas & Dave, Sophie Ellis-Bextor, The Wedding Present, and Charlotte Church. DJs include Boy George.

2015 saw us boogying to headliners Clean Bandit, Kaiser Chiefs (just loved being part of a huge festival singalong to Ruby, Ruby, Ruby) and Underworld. Also featuring were Ella Henderson, Professor Green, Wretch 32, Kate Tempest, Bob Geldof, Soul II Soul, Level 42, Alison Moyet, Ella Eyre, George The Poet, and Slaves, (who I hadn't heard before and they were great).

Last year, 2016, was one of DD's favourites, Jess Glynne, and we both loved Norman Cook aka Fatboy Slim on Saturday night an amazing DJ set. Sunday's headliners were Tears for Fears. We had plenty of old school tunes too with Bananarama, DJ Yoda, The Cuban Brothers, & Rob Da Bank's Prince tribute, And of course every year that is any good features Mr B The Gentleman Rhymer.

So who do I think should headline 2017? Madness of course! And lucky me, because they are indeed going to give us a reason to don baggy trousers and dance in a field in 2017

Trust me - you really don't want to miss this. The lineup is spectacular as always and great value for money. I've seen Bootleg Beatles before too, lovely to feel part of the swinging sixties(I was born in 1965 before you ask)  And Mark Ronson is always entertaining. Arrive on Thursday, leave Monday and spend all the time in between relaxed and being entertained by the stars.

This years fancy dress theme is Popstars and Rockstars. I'm having a think...but feel free to add suggestions in the comments! 

Ticket Info:
Camp Bestival 2017 Weekend Tickets are on sale now via: Ticketline / 0844 888 4410
The Camping Bestival 2017 Weekly Payment Plan is on sale now. Use our 30-week payment plan from £5 per week. Book online via Ticketline only.

Adult Weekend Ticket - £175*
Student Weekend Ticket - £165* / Age 13 to 17 Weekend Ticket - £105*
Age 10 to 12 Weekend Ticket - £80* / Age 5 to 9 Weekend Ticket - £30*
Age 4 & Under Weekend Ticket - £10*
Babes in Arms (1 & Under) - FREE (but ticket required)*
*All tickets include camping from Thursday / Please refer to the Camp Bestival Ticket Terms & Conditions below

Car Parking - £20 in advance / Campervan Ticket (Field A) - £90
Caravan / Trailer Tent Ticket (Field A) - £100
T&Cs here before booking

A Fantastic Food Festival in Sunny Sussex

A couple of weekends ago I dragged Mr TentSniffer along to a food festival. I say dragged, he wasn't that reluctant but he's not really a foody so it wasn't his favourite choice of things to do. As it was mostly outside we were able to take Fizz.

She was much admired and she didn't beg for food either! What a good girl.

We visited a cafe called The Hungry Guest for some coffee, we couldn't really say no as they had a board outside suggesting we try Fizz in the courtyard! We did and she liked it very much.

Mr TS rather fell for the Podgy Pieman, or at least for his wares. though the pies were slightly more than the penny of the nursery rhyme, they were delicious. Mr TS had a sausage roll with sundried tomatoes and fennel seeds and I had a shredded beef, beetroot and horseradish pasty. Yum!

I also enjoyed a cocktail made with gin from a small distillery in Scotland. Another triumph. I'm still cross I didn't try the Arbikie Chilli Vodka!

There were so many great things to sample and choose from we were spoiled for choice. Really nice day with an excuse to eat! Olives, fudge, bread, cakes, thai food, sausages, real ales, pies, you name it, it was there.

There are more food festivals across the country - check if there is one near you here.

Blackgang chine is a wonderful day out for all the family

Last time we went camping was to the Isle of Wight, and while it poured with rain pretty much the whole 4 days we were there, there was one day that fun was had by all. We went to Black Gang Chine.

In case you are wondering, a Chine is a narrow gully or gorge normally with a stream that cuts through it and runs into the sea, this is particularly dramatic if the cliff face is made of clay or sand. These are common on The Island around the South East/South West coastline. Many of these Chines date back in history.

The word Chine comes from the Saxon word 'Cinan' which means a gap or yawn.The Blackgang Chine Theme Park is located near to where the chine used to be in Victorian times and before. This has been reclaimed by the sea due to devastating effects of Landslip. This area was some 300 metres further out to sea than it is today. The Blackgang Fantasy Park has long been an attraction to go and see especially with children.

I haven't been there since I was about 10 and so my memory of it was mainly lots of winding paths, plants and some large fibreglass dinosaurs, and maybe a Cowboy town? I was delighted to find that the dinosaurs have come to life (they are now animatronic and really quite excellent) and the Cowboy town still exists. There was also a roller coaster, and lots of food outlets, loads of fun games and things to do...well it's hard to put it into words, so here is a feel for our day.

danger dinosaur sign Blackgang chine

T rex Blackgang chine

warning sign Blackgang chine

smiling dinosaur Blackgang chine

warning sign Blackgang chine

spider fear Blackgang chine

cask and weevil Blackgang chine

mermaid Blackgang chine

fibreglass horse cowboy town Blackgang chine

Blackgang chine

Blackgang chine

Blackgang chine

Blackgang chine

Dodo Blackgang chine

hedge maze Blackgang chine

Blackgang chine

Blackgang chine

limpets Blackgang chine

dragon video Blackgang chine

autumn sprite Blackgang chine
It was excellent value for money and I wouldn't hesitate to go back.

The Curious Arts Festival - Hampshire

I was lucky enough to win some festival tickets (I know!! massive thanks to Camp Fire Magazine) and so last weekend I went to the Curious Arts Festival in Hampshire.

It was all my favourite things in one, as I'm a self confessed 'Author Groupie' a literary festival is right up my street. My daughter simply adores comedy and loves stand up. We both love camping and I love gin! All of these things and more were catered for.
Patrick Gale interviews Damian Barr
A dog is tickled
The festival allows dogs which made for a delightfully friendly and tail-waggy time, we made friends with one cute little fellow based on our mutual love of fried haloumi.
A dog sits for more haloumi
The sun shone, the decorated trees, scattered deckchairs and classy furniture in the grounds of the beautiful Pylewell Park just finished the delightfully upper class feel. I managed a little poetry writing, DD and her friend took a stroll to the lake, there may have been snoozing in the sun and icecream (there was)

Book tree (one day tree, you too could be a book)

I was thrilled to finally meet an author I've chatted to for year online, Philip Ardagh (failed miserably to take a picture of of his fabulous beard too!) I also bought several books by Patrick Gale, an author that had been recommended to me some time ago. After attending an interview with him, and chatting to him at the book signing I'm really looking forward to reading 'A Place Called Winter', but first I'm reading a collection of his short stories, 'Gentleman's Relish' many of which have a distinct 'Tales of the Unexpected' feel about them.
Gentleman's Relish
My daughter was delighted with the comedy, from Lucy Porter, Simon Evans (very funny with his dry sarcastic humour), Richard Herring (who actually nearly caused me to do myself an injury through laughing at his romantic Ferrero Rocher tale of woe), Mark Watson (who DD is a huge fan of) to the new discovery, and very funny Noise Next Door.(thanks for inviting me onto the stage and singing saucy songs to me, it was a blast)

Mark Watson
One tiny criticism is that they need more food stalls! A local bakers and a local sweet shop maybe? Or even the local WI could run a tea and cake tent!  But I have no complaints and the free showers (which I didn't use obviously), water points, and clean toilets made staying fresh and hygienic easy!
some gin being photobombed by a sausage dog

Plenty of gin was drunk (by me - DD is only 15 after all) and music was danced to. It was a glorious festival, in glorious surroundings, and we were blessed with sunshine. Totally relaxing, I cannot wait until next year.
DD and me on a glamourous sofa, looking glamourous

Wilderness, wild people, wild festival, wild beauty

It's no secret, I love Wilderness festival. It's held in Oxfordshire in Cornbury park and since the first time we went (after winning tickets) I've been a huge fan. I dream about it all year and it's all over way too fast. This year was no exception. It's a festival where music plays second fiddle (see what I did there!?) to all the other amazing things that happen in the beautiful surroundings.

Already it seems so long ago, and already I'm booking tickets for next year.

    From the Shakespeare play in the woods, to the camel rides;
    From the trapeze acts to the cocktails:

    from the naked knitting to the bearded burger chefs:
    from the skinny dipping in the lake to the cinema in the fields;

    from the posting anonymous postcards via the Wilderness postmen and women to the bubble teas,;

    from the roller disco to the gospel music at the shack;

    from the main stage and Sam Smith in the rain to the burning tower and fireworks in the warm evening;

    from the Chap Olympics to the intellectual talks;

    there was nothing, nothing not to love.

    Can I tempt you to join us?

    See all my photos on flicker here (including the tents after the storm on the last night!! We survived OK though)

    A festival virgin tells all!

    I thought it was time we heard from someone else! I hunted about for a willing sacrificial virgin, and found one in the shape of Mamafurfur on twitter, a self confessed festival virgin! Off to Latitude this year and who knows where next year? I asked her a few questions about why she decided to take the plunge...

    Tell us a bit about yourself
    I'm 32yrs old new Mummy to 1/Wife to 1/Step-Mummy to 3 who sidelines as an IT sales executive during the days. Background in Electronic Engineering, but since having small dude last June, love to write about my experience of life since then and in my world in general. We also share our home with 2 rescue cats.

    Do you think of yourself as a country or a city sort? 
    City girl that enjoys the country, and the freedom/peace/silence it brings  

    Have you been camping before? If so where and what did you like/dislike about it? 
    Used to go caravaning as a child with my family, but nope never been camping before in my life. I like running water and electricity too much does my wavy hair like having straighteners as to not frighten people during the day. Love the idea of getting away from all the modern restrictions of life and being "connected" at all times, and just enjoying more relaxed and simplistic living even for a few days. Dislike the thought of my hair without said electricity... 

    What was the best Music gig you've been to? 
    Best gig would have to be one recently, The Temperance Movement in the Glasgow QMU, but also got to see my favourite band of the moment Halestorm this year which was amazing due to so many songs being very meaningful to me in the last 2 yrs. 

    What made you consider a festival this year? 
    Have always wanted to go and experience it, and this year Husband and I decided to do "things we wish we have done" each month. I took the plunge and booked up for my first festival during a time when our little dude will be looked after for a few nights, so it will be perfect date/first experience combined. Husband also loves music just as much as I do. 

    Will you be going to the festival alone? With family? With friends? 
    Going with Husband, who has been to a festival before (Download) 

    What sort of tent/camper/yurt option have you gone for? 
    Just a tent option....although hotel might be booked as backup plan if it all goes badly ;O) 

    What are your packing essentials? 
    Being Scottish, that means I prepare for rain at all times - wellies, rain coat, suncream, sunglasses, oldish clothes, camera, money 


    Why did you choose Latitude? 
    Timing really was the issue this year, and when we had little dude looked after diary confirmed, we choose our festival based on that weekend. Lineup also looked great for those dates, pricing good, so it was the ideal first festival as it has a mixture of comedy, music and arts. Plus it seems to cater for the whole family really well which means we might potentially return in coming year.s

    Did you read blogs/media about festivals before you decided? 
    Read reviews of past Latitude festivals, and the online info, and nothing seemed off putting. Seemed very friendly and less "all about getting drunk" atmosphere. Really seems as if it will be full days value for money with all types of they appear to have places that sell fish and chips. Bonus!  


    What are you looking forward to? What are the positive things about a festival you hope to enjoy? 
    Mostly being there having never done anything like this before. My hope is to either feel that this is something we will do again, perhaps this one or another music festival, but to have said we have done it and lived out one of my dreams. 

    What are you dreading? What are the nasty things you worry you might have to brave! 
    I have to let you into a secret - we have paid for the posh upgraded toilets to use each day as the thought of sharing horrible toilets puts me right off. Don't fancy that one bit - God bless the idea of having nicer toilets! And really hoping the weather is good as I'm not very good in the rain/wind/cold - ironically being Scottish and all.... 

    Is this a test trip to a festival? Do you plan to do more if you like it? Or is it a 'one off' for a bucket list!? 
    Its kinda started as a one off bucket list idea, but I am really hoping that this potentially turns into a yearly or few years thing for our family. I didn't realise there were "family" festivals out there, and my eyes have been opened. I actually think the dates of the festival played to our advantage and we might end up finding a concept we love for our wee family for years to come.  

    Will you be blogging about your experiences? 
    Absolutely! All experiences to be shared with others, and look forward to putting it up online towards end of July time!

    Find Jennifer's Blog here!

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