Last weekend was time for Gloworm Festival to take over Clumber Park, well I say take over it was situated in a comparatively tiny section of field that you have to drive around 10 minutes to once you enter the humongous park (3800 acres of prime national trust territory to be exact).
Upon entering, even in the car park, it was clear that the signage was not as good as last year. The disorganisation continued with the programme being rather confusing, the map didn’t tally properly with the layout and the listings were inaccurate. Added to that the marquees weren’t clearly identifiable.
However once I got my bearings the day commenced with much excitement (with the help of some delightful cocktails from Nellys lovely little bubble filled spot).
First up I went to check out the baby ballet, although this turned out to be sling swing, it was fun none the less. It also provided much needed shelter from the passing shower (hurricane Gert).
Although it was still lightly showering at the point I headed down to the main stage to see Blake Bastion who had a really soulful voice. Sadly there was not much of a crowd this early in the day.
At this stage of the day, the compare, Ted Robbins – off of Phoenix Nights, was doing his best despite the small crowd and weather. However he was already being noticeable sexist and inappropriate, which only become more apparent as the day continued. “A bit of blue for the dads” isn’t the best at a kiddies festival. It was also difficult to work out who he said was up next, the programme said it was Twin Kidd but it seemed to be a girl alone on acoustic guitar. Whoever she was she had lovely summer vibes and brought the sunshine out with her recognisable covers. Lovely vibes for lunch…
… now there were copious amounts of delicious looking food stands, including an artisan market that had a cheese stall and doughnuts!
I went for yamas and a yummy halloumi wrap. Not your standard festival grub!
The main buzz of the day was definitely around the beach and the fairground. All rides were included in your ticket price so had understandable queues but were lots of fun.
The main stage had the Chuckle Brothers who came on to some weird rap, that was all I could cope with and went off to check out the animals down at White Post Farm before accidentally walking in on and participating in a rather great drumming session by Beat Feet.
One Step Behind or Beyond if only Ted could remember which and stick to it, were a relieving follow up act to the Chuckle Brothers, really pulled an audience with their Madness covers and crowd pleasers. Sitting/dancing on a bale of hay, inadvertently in the queue to meet postman pat, and surrounded by bubbles was a lovely way to spend a couple of hours.
By this point I was flagging, Gert had incessantly brought the wind and it was rather cold, however I’m glad I wasn’t defeated before the Cuban Brothers who were just crazily inappropriate and hadn’t realised it was a children’s festival, openly admitting “someone messed up with the booking”, before introducing Senior Erection to the stage and making jokes about the adult industry with a load of swearing thrown in just to top it off. Hilarious and fantastic entertainment but probably not the most ideal event!!
Overall it wasn’t as good as last year, felt much less organised but there was so much going on from break dancing workshops to donkey rides and Morris dancing. It was kinda nice just to bump into it all whilst mooching around, although most workshops/activities did come across as a sales pitch.
Still it was a wonderful day out and it was clear to see the little ones had a fantastic time. Thanks Gloworm, just hope no one gets in too much trouble for booking Ted and the Cuban Brothers!
Review by Josie Opal
Photo Credit to Becki Fraser