8 months is a long time.
I thought the first festival of the year would never come.
After an absolutely amazing weekend at Shambala all those months ago I’ve been counting the days till we could be in a fields somewhere again. It’s been a LONG winter.
Elderflower Fields is the perfect start to the festival season. A super relaxed weekend in the most beautiful Sussex valley in Ashdown Forest. Less than an hour from Brighton it’s also a really easy way to start the May Bank Holiday quickly and stress free with the kids.
By far my favourite part of the weekend is the So Sussex group picnic. Everyone gathers on Dragon Fly Hill and pitches up with others to get stuck in to some delicious local foods – all part of your ticket. Summer is finally here!
2014 saw the addition of the Bathing Under The Sky double-decker hot tub bus. It was back this year and did not disappoint. Although the festival is very much aimed at kids and all the great new experiences they can try, adults are not forgotten with touches like this, the amazing local food and drink and the spa treatments.
New for 2015 was the cocktail bar stage. Our top spot of the weekend, great cocktails, a lovely vibe and plenty of rope swings and a few hammocks for the kids to keep busy on.
The organisation this year was exceptional. The addition of allocated camper van pitches, which I’d originally envisaged turning to absolute chaos in a festival environment, not only meant we didn’t have to make sure we arrived at the same time as friends, but also that we had ample space to set up camp. Also that our friends in tents could camp right with us.
Other excellent additions were the land trains that took campers (and mini hitch hiking joy riders) around the site all weekend. Great for getting camping gear from car park to other side of festival, and also for tired legs at the end of the day.
As well as the picnic, special thought is put into the other food on offer at Elderflower Fields. There was never more than a couple of people waiting at the food vendors and everyone sold top-notch, reasonably priced food. They also all offered great kids portions rather than making the little ones survive on chips all weekend. Spoilt for choice, a couple of our favorites were superb fish from Olly’s Fish Shack and legend burgers from Big Eats Co smoke shack in the woods.
My kids are not usually that up for sports and organised activities. They are much happier just exploring and discovering things for themselves. But this year I
forced encouraged them to take part in the sports camp. It’s just one of the things you can pre-book and leave your kids doing while you hit the cocktail bar relax. For very organised parents you can even book the sessions on the internet in advance and book yourself into the double-decker hot tub bus or for a woodland spa massage. You can just about see the bus pictured in the background of Daisy trying out archery so it’s perfect to watch your kids from the luxury of a wood fired tub and sip some champagne. Nice!
For us, Elderflower Fields Festival is all about discovery and freedom. It’s one of the few festivals I am happy to let my kids wander completely free. Even when they were smaller it felt like a safe environment for them to grow within. I wrote previously letting the flock fly free and I really believe it is a perfect environment to allow them to the space and freedom to grow that I had as a child.
See you next year all!
*More hammocks please Elderflower Fields!