Dates: 13th-15th July 2018
Location: The Great Tew Park, Oxfordshire
In a tremendous about-turn, Cornbury Festival is returning in 2018 to celebrate it’s 15th year. Started in 2004, this wonderful event in Great Tew, Oxfordshire, has been a firm favourite and staple in the summer calendar for many years . Due to the saturation of the festival industry, director Hugh Phillimore had decided to “leave on a high” – but received such strong encouragement to carry on that he reversed his decision.
“So many people have sent messages since July – our audience love the event and want it to keep going. Literally hundreds of our supporters, together with bands, agents, managers, sponsors and media partners telling me I shouldn’t let such a jewel in the festival calendar end.” Hugh Phillimore
Offering a charmingly eclectic mix of entertainment, the festival boasts a superb mix of performances; something for the whole family to enjoy. It attracts all sorts of people: “a homespun melting pot where music-lovers share pies and a glass of champagne with superstars, toffs, rockers, crooners, Morris dancers, farmers, urbanites, fashionistas, gourmet chefs and little old ladies who make exceptional cakes.” One can see why there was such strong resistance to its closing down.
There are four stages – where in past years musical greats such as Bryan Ferry, Jamie Cullum, Seal, The Pretenders and Newton Faulkner and plenty others have wooed the crowds to ecstatic delight. There’s room for the up and coming too though; indeed, there is stage especially for emerging talent that is hosted by coffee kings Cafe Nerro. Keeping everyone on their toes and laughing are performers peddling wit at the Berk’s Nest Comedy Emporium. As this is absolutely a family-friendly affair, they also offer a fully stocked children’s area, bursting with fun activities and entertainment. Your child (and you!) will get to participate in learning circus skills and building giant dens, watch a pirate pantomime, make pompoms and head dresses, do a spot of yoga or storytelling and even try their hand at batik and learn some kids’ ukulele. This and so much more.
Arts and crafts and a relaxation area offer a more sedate platform for your pleasure, whilst the Disco Shed will keep you dancing your socks off all night long. It wouldn’t be a proper festival without a respectable array of food stalls, allowing you to take your culinary senses on a delectable journey. The Mayflower Tent is a bespoke chill zone for teenagers, where they can play the guitar; get some henna done; get their hair braided; or just hang out.
If you’re thinking this sounds like a pretty perfect weekend, we’d have to agree with you. That is, as long as you have your accommodation sorted. Yes, it’s fine to spend a couple of cramped nights on a dodgy air bed and wake up startled and sweaty only to have to join the disgruntled queue for the showers. But is it that fun? And wouldn’t you rather make every moment exceptional? You know what to do – book some unique luxury camping so your nights are just as happy as your days.