Dates: 12th - 14th June 2020
Location: Donington Park, Leicestershire
Donington Park in Leicestershire, England, has long been a well-beloved home of rock. Since the days of Ozzfest and Monsters of Rock, fans have flocked to this historic site, eager to hear such hallowed bands as Iron Maiden, Marilyn Manson, Black Sabbath, Metallica, Slipknot, Saxon, Aerosmith, AC/DC, Thin Lizzie and Guns N’ Roses, among many others.
It has moved, but just round the corner, since it was first held in 2003 at the Donington Park Circuit. It had to shift after the construction of the site as a Formula 1 racetrack in 2008, and finally settled just south of the circuit where there was room to have multiple stages and camping for attendees.
The name ‘Download’ is said to have been chosen for two reasons: first, because, back in 2003, ‘download’ was thought to be a ‘dirty word’ – due to illegal file sharing when the internet became more easily accessible to people. Rock being the vehicle for rebellion that it is, ‘Download’ was deemed suitably defiant nomenclature. Second, the festival was to be the Monsters of Rock for a new era of technology and communications, where the internet would connect audiences and spread the music.
Since it started all those years ago, the festival has spread to Scotland, Spain, France and Australia, annually attended by thousands upon thousands of loyal followers. The festival organisers know exactly what their fans want, and thus each festival is usually well-stocked with excellent bars, good food and all the right merch.
As you might expect from a rock festival, there’s a suitably hip line-up for extra-curricular activities. Being a rocker, there’s a good chance you have plenty of tats already, but if you’ve room for one more, you might visit Old Sarum (they have great follow-up care to make sure your tattoo heals properly over the weekend). Pop in to the Circus of Horrors and witness dark magic and limber performers bending your mind and their limbs in extraordinary contortions. Sign up to Demolition Download for some ‘mediaeval mayhem’ as you battle it out in heavy metal (!) armour in authentic, full contact competitions. There are puppet shows and metal movies, WWE and air guitar championships, amongst so much more.
Of course even rock’n’roll enthusiasts need to sleep sometime, and thankfully there’s luxury camping on site… Be sure to book in now!