INTO THE WILDERNESS
A short review of Wilderness Festival 2012
The weather decided to play ball, and that on its own made for a great festival. That and of course the most fabulous location; set amidst a private estate with a lake one could swim in, complete with cascade, rowing boats and a champagne bar.
In addition to this, there was a Spa with hot tubs and sauna, although this was a paid for extra which turned out to be fully booked!
The festival itself was medium-sized and perfectly formed, with all the usual appendage, but quite obviously very carefully selected which made for a pleasant experience and kept in line with its “cultural” self-branding!
The fact that Vintage Festival was merged in was an added bonus, providing a wealth of quirky and interesting stalls.
There was music of course, of many kinds, on various beautiful stages, but so much more besides that it didn’t particularly feel like a music festival…
Although I did catch the excellent Wilco playing to a medium size enthusiastic croud with a shamefully empty photographer’s pit!
There were lots of activities on offer and a whole field dedicated to ancient traditional crafts where people could partake, as well as reading, writing, poetry, comedy, theatre and a very lovely kids area.
It was very much family orientated, although at night there was also plenty to do, striking a nice balance… But unfortunately everything was switched off promptly at 2 AM every night which caused a few complaints as there was no chill-out space either – which was quite a severe oversight on the part the organizers.
Biggest highlights were the two Future Cinema screenings of Bugsy Malone and La Haine with a live score from Asian Dub Foundation.
These were held in a separate adjoining area which once discovered seemed to open up into a whole new festival and which led onto a very deep valley where all the heaving late night action took place.
Another area of interest was the Sanctuary where all forms of healing, therapies, Yoga classes and workshops were on offer. This was a lovely well organized field and very popular.
The other facilities were pretty average considering this was touted as a boutique festival, that’s when the lake and the Spa really came in handy.
There was a very mixed croud of mostly happy people and the atmosphere was great with no apparent trouble.
But somehow I never got that really loved up togetherness feeling I have experienced in the past, maybe it was just me…
Over all a very lovely festival, I’m still looking forward to next year!
All the gorgeous people I met as I wandered round taking pix
The lake and cascade
The Bubble shop – endless fun and shooting ops
Asian dub foundation – kicked ass as usual!
The sanctuary and it’s lovely crew
Shop with bathtub full of flowers and flower masks
All the generous stall holders who understood that we’re all in this together…
The fabulous flags – over a 1000 of them
The sunshine – love u
Very heavy-handed security – why?
The petty thieving – lots of reports here and my sunnies went too!
Lack of facilities in crew camping – look after your people and they will look after you.
Some not so generous stall holders, you know who you are…