Festivals have become an essential ingredient of the British summer, but for some the larger festivals just don’t cut it any more. In a bid to reject commercialisation and enjoy the true magic of the festival once again, many people are now seeking out the smaller festivals for a truly unique summer experience.
There are now a number of smaller festivals to choose from which are far from mainstream and provide unique experiences which are often a lot more affordable and sometimes even free.
So which are the best ones to head to this summer?
1. Lounge on the Farm, Canterbury
This local festival takes place at Merton Farm in Canterbury, and is already becoming widely known in the region as one of the best small festivals around.
The focus of the festival is very much on the local region. This involves local food being served up using local ingredients, and most of the music comes from local acts. However, it still manages to attract some big names.
There is a very informal feel to the festival and with interesting extras like foraging lessons this is one festival where you will really be able to enjoy something a bit different.
Dates: July 8th to 10th
2. Buddhafield, Somerset
Buddhafield in Taunton, Somerset, is an alternative festival with a focus on spirituality, and especially buddhism. This is the festival to head to when relaxation and meditation is more your thing.
There is a focus on environmental friendliness, and for that reason the organisers encourage the use of public transport to get to the festival to prevent people from leaving a large carbon footprint. There is also a ban on alcohol and any drugs which leads to a very unique atmosphere.
Dates: July 13th to 17th
3. Blissfields, Hampshire
This festival has a very local feel to it and is another of the smaller festivals fighting back against the commercialisation of the festival spirit. It is held on a dairy farm and the capacity of just 5,000 people creates a very mellow and relaxed vibe. There are no big-name bands, but the music is still fantastic.
Dates: June 30th to July 3rd
4. National Forest Folk Festival, Leicestershire
This small (1,000 capacity) folk festival is one of the best to be held anywhere during the summer. Situated in the National Forest Visitor Centre, it is a very family-friendly event, and the ability to pitch your tent right next to the venue lends it a unique atmosphere. Besides the excellent music there is also an adventure playground and there are viewing platforms in the trees.
Dates: July 1st to 3rd
5. Standon Calling, Hertfordshire
This festival in Ware, Hertfordshire, is quite new to the scene but growing rapidly. It’s even managing to attract some large names as well as some excellent smaller bands. This is slightly more lively than some of the other festivals, with its all-night nightclub being one of the main attractions. The 16th-century manor house setting and accommodation including yurts makes this something a bit different to enjoy this summer.
Dates: August 12th to 14th
Enjoy the Magic of the Smaller Festivals
If you are visiting any of the above areas this summer then make sure you check out one of these excellent smaller festivals on offer. There are lots more small festivals across the country, including Llama in Devon and 2000trees in Gloucestershire, so find out what’s going on in the area where you are heading this summer and enjoy a really special experience that you just can’t get any more at the big festivals.