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Truly Unique Festivals for 2016 – words Alexa Wang
It’s festival season again and our Inbox is being hammered by the myriad of festivals all vying to be the best. It’s hard trying to keep one step ahead of the pack as they all try to be that little bit different to the rest.
Even the smaller boutique festivals have to reinvent themselves otherwise they might risk fading away. Some grow bigger but then they risk becoming watered down version of their former selves and look pale in comparison to the young pretenders that are imagining new festivals each year. We’ve put together a list of some of the festivals that stand out for us for 2016. These are the ones we personally aim to try out for ourselves this year.
Lincolnshire, May 27 to 29
Lost Village is a newcomer, still only in its second year, but it has already created quite a stir. It’s set in stunning countryside and even features hot tubs by a lake and lots of art content as well as the usual music acts. Get lost in the woods and then stumble across an Abandoned Chapel, the Forgotten Cabin or perhaps stumble across the Theatre of Lost. The music though has been well thought out and you’ll be able to tap your foot to the likes of Ben Klock, Eats Everything and Jack Garratt as they play their music amongst the trees.
The Big Feastival
Festivals have come a long way since wading in a muddy field with a burger in one hand and a warm can of lager in the other back in the bad old days. People expect a lot more now which is a good thing as it’s pushing up the quality and the creativity. The Big Festival puts food right at the centre of the action. This festival is the new born baby of Jamie Oliver and Alex James from Blur and is set in Alex James own farm in The Cotswolds. There will be cookery classes, top chefs showing you how they do it plus delicious feasts with food supplied by local producers. You won’t be music starved though with the likes of Mark Ronson, Tinie Tempah and the Kaiser Chiefs taking the stage so you can dance and work off some of the calories.
In the Woods
Secret Location, near London. September 2-3.
In The Woods are no spring chicken in the boutique festival stakes but they are still one of the best. This year it celebrates its tenth birthday and it promised to be one of the best ones yet. It has manged to keep its original spirit and unique edge and yes its location is still secret until the weekend arrives itself. The line-up for this year’s festival is a nice blend including Laura Marling, Drenge, Jack Garratt, Soak and Kate Tempest and many others which are (you guessed it) kept secret until the festival itself arrives.
Porthleven, Cornwall. May 20-22.
If you are after a more dance infused style fest then Masked Ball might be the one for you. Here you can trip the light fantastic to the sophisticated funky disco grooves of 2ManyDJs, Basement Jaxx, Groove Armada (DJ), B Traits, Ben Pearce, Jungle (DJ), Julio Bashmore, Ms Dynamite. It all takes place by the seaside too so if the British summer allows you might even get to dip a pinkie in the Atlantic.
Secret Garden Party
Mill Hill Field, Cambridgeshire. July 21-24.
If you’re into lush green surroundings and are a bit of a hippy at heart then you need a dose of Secret Garden Party. In and amongst the green and forested spaces you will find DJ’s, bands, art, of every kind. Unleash your inner wood fairy and forget thoughts of work and the daily grind with like-minded folk in a woodland world of magic and wonder. They have the coolest bands too with Air, Caribou, Primal Scream, The Temper Trap, Submotion Orchestra, Field Music, Rae Morris, Swim Deep all popping by to give you some cool sounds. Of course this is still the UK and not the real Woodstock, but you might find some people smoking some famous UK Big Buddha Cheese ;).