Unless your pockets are stuffed with cash it seems there are two ways to indulge in the festival scene: Either choose one of the big ones and pray it lives up to its expectations or carefully select a few of the smaller, cheaper festivals and look forward to it regardless.
This coming weekend is the 5th year of Redfest, a smaller festival set in gorgeous countryside at Robin Cook Farm in Redhill, Surrey (less than an hour from central London). Redfest is aimed at a younger audience and does not boast ‘eclectic’ or ‘boutique’ statuses like so many other smaller festivals aimed at a slightly older (perhaps middle class) demographic. Instead Redfest promises to go ahead whatever the weather (there website optimistically states that ‘The Sun will be shining!’) and to introduce you to ‘the best up and coming local and national acts.’ There is no age restriction on the festival, however, if you are under 16 you must be accompanied by an adult and if you are under 18 you will not be allowed to take alcohol into the site or to purchase any whilst you’re there (remember ID if you’ve got a babyface).
In previous years Redfest has hosted Laura Marling, Enter Shikari, Hadouken and Ed Sheeran. Names like these have given the festival a reputation for picking up great acts whilst they’re still relatively small. The headliners of the festival are Modestep, Kids in Glass Houses and Foreign Beggars all of whom are pretty much household names. Acts further down the line up we would urge you to watch out for would have to be: Sonic Boom Six, Fei Comodo and The Skints. The weekend promises to be filled with high spirits and energy as we dance our way to a brand new music collection.
Redfest promises to be a steal at just £65 for a full 3 days with no extra charge for camping or parking. You don’t even have to pay for a programme, small donation to Wiltshire Air Ambulance is asked for instead. Redfest is also supporting the charities Alive & Well (http://www.alivewell.org.uk/) and the Orpheus Centre (http://www.orpheus.org.uk/) this year. It’s these little touches that show off Redfests’ independence from corporate sponsorship.
Alcohol can be brought into the campsite (no glass as standard) and you can even have a BBQ (obviously as long as your careful). Don’t stock up on disposables and sausages too quickly though because the choice of food on sight sounds pretty fantastic ‘Thai, Mexican, Quality Burgers, Indian, Vegetarian & Vegan, Fresh Smoothies, Crepes, Coffee & Doughnuts’ Wow! You’ll also be able to fill up in the beer tent in the main arena or alternatively there’s a cocktail bus if you fancy something a little stronger. (Not sure if the cocktails are served from the bus like ice cream or if you get on the bus to party down… I’ll let you know when I get back!)
So what else is on offer? There is an oxygen bar and a shisha tent but not a lot else by the sounds of it. But with 3 stages and two dance tents what more could you need?
For more information and tickets click here.
Watch: Redfest 2011 Hush TV compilation