Cheapstock! The first pick of budget festivals for 2014
Did you know, fest fans, that there are more festivals per head in Britain than anywhere else in the world? And that 2013 saw the news that festivals are becoming increasingly the preserve of the well-off and mid-30s, as young people are priced out of the market? Yes, you probably do know that last one...
Going to a festival these days costs an average of £423.01 with tickets, accommodation, equipment and food/drink, with 60 per cent of 18 – 24 year olds surveyed by MSN UK saying that festival-going was out of their reach. Leaving aside the point that this means that 40 per cent of 18 – 24 year olds can afford to drop over £420 on a weekend’s entertainment (in our day we made our own fun, etc etc), we fervently agree that some festivals are getting to Very Silly Prices Indeed.
We can’t promise the big players for under the hundred quid per weekend we’ve challenged ourselves to find some budget fests, but we’ve found what we think is a nice little selection of five for next year. And if you combine them with a camping holiday, you can get a week away for the price of one Glastonbury ticket:
From 13 – 15 June 2014 at Raehills Meadows near Moffat, with live music, comedy, art, cabaret, puppeteers and even a sauna. Early bird tickets are on sale now from £59 per person for the weekend – avoid the busy camping fields at one of our nearby sites such as Barnsoul Caravan Park, with non-electric tent and hardstanding electric pitches from £119 – £140 for seven nights from 13 – 20 June.
£10 in advance or £12 on the gate will give you access to over 18 hours of live music over two days, or pay £20 for a ticket and T-shirt – bargain. As is a week’s hol in North Yorkshire: electric tourer and motorhome pitches at Northallerton’s Pembroke Caravan Park less than ten miles from the festival start from £119 for seven nights. Prefer to glamp? Family camping pods at Richmond’s Hillcrest Park start from £110 that weekend for a minimum two-night stay.
In Cambridge’s Guildhall, LodeStar music festival is over the last weekend of August, leaving plenty of time to take a full week for the bank holiday for sightseeing in Cambridge. Early bird tickets for LodeStar are £50 for adults and £35 for 15 – 17 year olds; under 14s are free.
'The Best Little Festival in The South West,’ Adrian Edmondson says of this famed family-friendly music fest, which will celebrate its seventh year in 2014 from 18 – 19 July. ‘Super early bird’ tickets for 2014 have already sold out (alack) and early bird tickets are on sale in the New Year. Prices haven’t yet been confirmed, but expect to pay around £65 – 70 for an adult ticket; tickets were £65 in 2013.
As it’s a family festival, book the crew into a holiday park for the week: Golden Sands Holiday Park just over the border in Dawlish, Devon, is a short stroll from the beach and has kids’ club, clubhouse with free wifi and heated indoor and outdoor pool complexes. An electric pitch starts from £223 for the week of 17 – 24 July.
Not one but three 80s festivals for budget prices! Yes, you should be so lucky: pass the hairspray and the neon pink legwarmers Rewind started in Henley-on-Thames, added another site in Scotland a few years later, and is going north for the first time in 2014, to Capesthorne Hall in Cheshire. Early bird tickets for each festival are £90.
Get up to eighties silliness for the full week of for the week of 11 – 18 August at sites near each festival: in Oxfordshire, White Mark Farm less than eight miles away from Rewind has non-electric grass pitches for tents and trailer tents from £91, with no size restrictions on the pitch and with two dogs and unlimited cars included in the pitch price. Up north, Lime Tree Holiday Park 14 miles from the festival has non-electric grass tent pitches from £121 for the week and electric pitches for tents, tourers and motorhomes from £163. And in Scotland, both Corriefodly Holiday Park and Blairgowrie Holiday Park have hardstanding electric pitches from £140 – 147, within 13 – 15 miles.
Our other money-saving tips for festivals
Go for a day instead of the full weekend: The Larmer Tree Festival, for example, starts from £39 for a day ticket as opposed to £215 for the full five days. If you do this, you can combine a day of the bands you want to see with other stuff to do in the area: Larmer Tree is in Salisbury, Wiltshire, with Stonehenge and the medieval city of Salisbury nearby, and is minutes’ drive from Dorset.
Get early-bird tickets: Get in early and plan next summer’s festivals this autumn. Not only will having something to look forward to stop you from going quietly mad once They turn the clocks back, you can bag the best pitches at nearby campsites too: so far you can book for 2014 at over 430 Pitchup.com sites, with more being added every day. Make a week or a fortnight of it and stay at a holiday park or campsite nearby.
Look for festivals with payment plans: If your little heart is set on a £200 festival, look for ones where you can pay the ticket off month by month or in a few instalments. Camp Bestival in Dorset allows buyers to pay a fiver a week over 36 or 38 weeks, and the Secret Garden Party in Cambridgeshire offers a payment plan of three instalments until April 2014.
We’ll be adding more budget festivals for 2014 as dates are confirmed: in the meantime, to find festivals of any type at any time of year, search for the festival name or its postcode on our homepage (and if the listing’s not there yet please let us know). Any good budget festivals we've left out? Let us know that too, and we'll be as grateful as a teenager given a Glastonbury ticket.