As you guys know, last week I was invited to attend the legendary Wilderness Festival with Pimms. Wilderness has always been on my radar – probably because of it’s link with glitter, teepees, clean eating and chilled out vibes. Come join me in this blog post for the most magical of weekends.
Wilderness is unique in its approach and like no other festival I have attended, and I’ve attended a lot around the UK over the years including T in the Park, Leeds, Reading and Lovebox. Wilderness is a festival that focuses equally on music, as it does on gastronomy, arts and culture with an array of workshops, sessions and event on throughout the weekend.
Activities range from paddleboarding on the lake, yoga under the stars, attending mediation class, weaving baskets, or joining the Wilderness choir for the weekend. And the food, my god, the food is just 5* with every type of food you could desire within one festival. Think Vietnamese, French, German, Thai, alongside tea stalls, vegan burgers and plant based meals.
We also spent most of Saturday lunch time at the Pimms bus and Croquet Club, near The Atrium. The club even had a croquet master, and was selling Pimms by the glass or the jug. We didn’t join them for a spot of croquet but we did grab a couple of drinks and sat in their beautifully decorated garden, surrounded by roses, and deck chairs. It was a very delightful affair!
“Nomads and gastronomes. Rockers and roamers. Drifters and dreamers. The reclusive, the wise, the weird and the wild. Welcome. Step in and linger. We invite you on an escapade like no other.” Wilderness Festival
Over the weekend there’s also a busy a schedule of talks, debates and readings to attend should one feel that all the milling around in the sunshine just isn’t stimulating the mind enough. Highlights across the weekend included Letters Live, Newsweek debate in The Forum, Sunday Papers Live: UK News Section and What Makes a Real Woman. P.S Benedict Cumberbatch attended the Letters Live talk.
And lets not forget the all important music line-up. The Wilderness Main Stage, with BBC Music they welcomed Two Door Cinema Club, Grace Jones and Bonobo as shining headliners, with an astonishing roster of talent underneath them. Toots and the Maytals were also amazing, and Theo loved listening to them after years of playing them off our record player in the living room. Other acts included First Aid Kit, Hudson Taylor, Sigrid, and Ray BLK.
Another great venue was The Atrium, supported by Time Out. It’s the place where the strands of the festival unite with an assembly of sensational music and dance from the UK and around the world. The Atrium is the best bits of Wilderness collected under one canopy. Ronnie Scott’s took the reins for a special night of high atmospherics on Friday, and then the Wilderness Orchestra paid tribute to Nina Simone with the help of the wonderful Laura Mvula and special guest Will Young.
Then just before we left on the Sunday I was kindly invited to a Long Table Banquet with The Original Muck Boot Company hosted by Yotam Ottolenghi. Ottolenghi is a cookery writer and chef-patron of the Nopi and Ottolenghi restaurants and delis. The lunch included grilled courgette with sorrell pesto, slow cooked lamb shoulder with figs and apricots and to finish, rolled pavlova with peaches and raspberries.
I left Wilderness on the Sunday feeling full of happiness, after a weekend of being surrounded by love, friendship and hope. It is a festival which brings people together, no matter what shape, size, race, opinion or background. It is a festival which is relaxed, yet fun, and inspiring yet familiar.
I was so impressed with the festival, and hats off to the organisers of Wilderness Festival – it’s a magical place and if you’re thinking about attending, do it, do it, do it – and do it in style!
Find out about Wilderness Festival 2018 here.