Globalmouse writer Louise shares her highlights for the forthcoming Camp Bestival.
We are all looking forward to heading back to the queen of family friendly festivals – Camp Bestival! (30th July – 2nd August 2015). We last went in 2011 and we enjoyed it so much we have wanted to go back ever since. Set in the grounds of Lulworth Castle, everything this amazing festival has to offer families just gets bigger and bigger.
This years theme is ‘Camp Bestival Goes Wild’. Along with the usual fancy dress (this year: ‘Feral Fancy Dress’) there are wild activities to sign up for, such as off site walks with the National Trust, and sleeping out under the stars.
As the festival gets bigger, there are just so many wonderful opportunities – and some of these need to be signed up for in advance, so it’s a good idea to get a bit organised. I’ve already signed my younger child up for the ‘Alex Rider Spy School’ (names will be randomly chosen for this as places are limited).
Some of the ‘Go Wild’ activities need to be signed up for too – you can do this at the website, or on the Friday at the festival site. However, one thing I love about Camp Bestival is discovering new things as we wander around, and, as always, there is plenty on offer if you’d rather take the weekend as it comes and not plan ahead too much.
Down in the ‘Spinney Hollow’ there are lots of craft activities for all of the family using traditional craft skills – my kids really love the craft areas at festivals and I’m looking forward to being able to join in with some of these – especially the chance to make a ‘Gandalf style staff’! There is entertainment on offer as well in this area, and a chance for the children to BE the entertainment – my family will love this, and my only problem will be trying keep them off the stage! And there will be drop-in lunches, or a woodland banquet you can sign up for, which will include tips on how to forage and eating wild food.
In the past we haven’t got to see many of the comedy acts at festivals and this is something I’d like to remedy this year as there are lots of great acts lined up – I’d particularly love to catch Marcus Brigstocke. And of course the kids love Camp Bestival regulars Dick and Dom – and there is a ‘Comedy Club 4 Kids’ we are looking forward to checking out too. ‘The Den’ for 13 – 17 year olds looks an inspired addition to the festival. Billed as ‘a place to escape’ for teens, it’s so great to see the festival catering for older kids who want to break out and do their own thing whilst their parents are doing embarrassing dancing in front of a stage somewhere. The Den has music, talks on subjects such as blogging, and chances to have a go at parkour and poetry and festival fashion. Its strictly no adults allowed – but I have a feeling my 13 year old will be spending a lot of time here!
Younger kids as always have an enormous array of activities to look forward to at Camp Bestival. The brilliant Mr Tumble is back this year, and my daughter who is a huge fan of singing and dancing is really looking forward to the musical theatre workshops with West End Kids and the BRIT School. Alongside this there is a chance to spot the Gruffalo, family films, kids’ discos, and a science tent that seems like a festival all of its own! It will be fab to wander around and join in.
And, for the whole family there is the usual fantastic music line-up. We grown-ups are looking forward to Underworld, Soul II Soul, Kaiser Chiefs and Kate Tempest among so many others, and the kids have already spotted Clean Bandit, Professor Green, and Ella Henderson. So, once we’ve hung out at the kids’ area, laughed in the comedy tent and checked out ‘The Den’ we’ll all be meeting down at the stage for some crazy festival dancing – and I can’t wait!
You can find out more about this year’s line up at the Camp Bestival website.