Music Festivals are always a summer highlight for me and with so many to choose from, I thought I would compile a list of my top UK festivals for 2012.
Everyone can be a festival-goer, there is something out there for you whether you like the music, the food, the camping, the fashion or just the general fun of it all!
Best all round: Latitude 12th-15th July
I am so excited about Latitude, a festival which never disappoints with its eclectic array of music, literature, comedy, cabaret and theatre acts. This year looks set to be bigger and better than ever with Bon Iver, Elbow and Paul Weller headlining. Somehow Latitude always manage to appeal to all ages and is a truly memorable event for the whole family to enjoy. The Word Stage have gathered up a group of first class performers including Lana del Rey, St Vincent, Explosions in the Sky and Lianne la Havas. And for those classically inclined, Lang Lang will be giving a performance by the Waterfront on Sunday 15th.
Best atmosphere: Hop Farm 29th June- 1st July
Hop Farm only began back in 2008 and yet it still manages to present some of the most exciting music festival acts. Last year they had Prince and, believe me when I say, it was a musical highlight of my life… it was electrifying. The year before, I spent the day fighting my way to the front to ensure rinside exclusivity for none other than Bob Dylan. This year they boast exclusive acts like Sir Bruce Forsyth who appears in his first ever festival, also performances from legendary artists like Peter Gabriel and The New Blood Orchestra, Bob Dylan and Suede. Other guests include Ray Davies, Billy Ocean, Patti Smith, The Psychedelic Furs, Bellowhead, George Clinton, Athlete, and a personal favourite of mine, Jose Gonzalez.
Best London festival: Lovebox 15th-17th June
This year Lovebox celebrates ten years of existence. Wild and wonderful, contemporary and cool, Lovebox is London’s hottest festival, taking place in Victoria Park, Hackney. Without the stress of camping, this day festival excels in providing Londoners with raucous music and fun. This year Lana del Ray is taking to the stage alongside Grace Jones, Hot Chip and Kelis, who I recently witnessed in Beirut! Last year I had great fun checking out the vintage stalls which offer gorgeous retro clothing and accessories for bargain prices.
Best food: Port Eliot 19th-22nd July
Alongside the awesome music and creativity, Port Eliot offers some inspiring grub for hungry festival goers. Now in its ninth year, this Cornwall-based Festival introduces a wealth of talent with more of an interest in the culinary than most festivals. Nathan Outlaw (2 Michelin stars, of St Enedoc Hotel in Rock) will be working his magic in the Port Eliot kitchen. Celebrated food experts, William Sitwell and Allegra McEvedy are teaming up to tell the tale of ten dishes that changed the world. And cocktail lovers should be excited as London restaurateur and writer, Russell Norman brings his renowned signature drinks to Port Eliot.
Best fashion: Bestival 6th-9th September
Every year Bestival encourages guests to dress imaginatively and the results are a field of psychedelic craziness. The boutique campsite caters for those guests wishing to sleep in more luxurious lodgings. This year musicians include Stevie Wonder, Florence and the Machine, Emeli Sande and 2ManyDJS, a variety of music stars from all genres.
There’s no excuse, dig out your wellies and prepare for a summer of festival fun.