Top 5 UK Festivals of 2012…Probably

I love festivals.

I normally go about it all the time, but I don’t seem to have written about it since my How to be British post! I grew up near Glastonbury and am partial to taking the opportunity to listen to live music, in my wellies, with a cold (or slightly lukewarm) drink in my hand at least two or three times each festival season.

This post is a bit late to the party really, as a few events have already been and gone, but here’s my look ahead to a summer of fun, fabulous festivals.

Secret Garden Party

This not-so-secret festival gem is one of the best parties in the land. The serious festival go-ers (you know, those people who manage to hold down a full-time job all summer but still go to EVERYTHING) take it very seriously and come down hard on anyone with anything negative to say about SGP.

It’s got a very creative cameraderie, lots of stuff for chidren to do, and a stonkingly diverse line up for 2012 – this year you’ll get to see Orbital, KT Tunstall, Little Dragon, Tim Minchin, Passenger, Dylan LeBlanc & The Duke Spirit. The general consensus is that, if you can only go to one festival this summer, it should probably be Secret Garden Party (it’s very hard to write that seeing as I can’t go…grrr).

Where: Cambridgeshire

When: 19th – 22nd July

Ticket status: Sold out


Latitude’s website claims it to be “more than just a music festival”, and it’s not wrong. They have a big emphasis on comedy and the spoken word, which really makes it stand out from the festie crowd. I tend to spend half of each Glastonbury in the comedy tent, so I’m off to Latitude to see how it can compete.

On the music side of things, Latitude 2012 has Elbow (Guy Garvey is my hero), Bon Iver, Paul Weller, White Lies, Django Django, the Horrors and Ben Howard. So it’s pretty music a 6music listener’s dream come true.

Where: Henham Park, Suffolk

When: 12th – 15th July 2012

Ticket status: Available

Green Man

I’ve never been to Green Man before but I am going this year, hooray! By all accounts it’s the most true festival to the original Glasto-vibe – great for music lovers and families alike. I’m not sure if I am more excited about the stunning scenery around the site or about the music; acts appearing this year include Van Morrisson, The Bees, Slow Club, Willy Mason and The Walkmen.

Where: Glanusk Park, Wales

When: 17th, 18th & 19th August

Ticket status: Most types of ticket are still available


Festibelly takes place in the beautiful New Forest over the August bank holiday weekend. This year, for the first time, it’s a 2-night event instead of 1 – great news to me and mine as we’ve been big fans of this particular boutique festival for the last few years!

The event is small, but oh my is it perfectly formed. The line-up generally involves one or two big-name acts, supported by a host of brilliantly chosen lesser-known artists. There’s a main stage and a handful of smaller tents, each with their own style and vibe. Their food has an emphasis on local produce, and the drinks are reasonably priced (but they do use a voucher system which always means going home with unused tokens – grrrr). My most very favourite thing about Festibelly is that its small size means you can’t lose your friends, even if you try.

Where: New Forest

When: 25th & 26th August

Ticket status: Available

V Festival

Ok, so V-fest is the most blatently corporate of corporate festivals – but I guess we should give them props for not trying to hide behind a smokescreen of faux-hippiness. The reasons that V has made it to this list are that (a) it’s one of the BIG festivals that have shaped the UK festival scene over the last couple of decades and (b) the Stone Roses are performing. Need I say more?

Where: 2-sites (Midlands & South East)

When: 18th / 19th August

Ticket status: Available

Who’s Going to Festivals This Year?

As for the title of the post, well, the festivals haven’t happened yet and I’m not going to them all, so who am I to say now which will be the top UK festivals of 2012? Let me know which ones you’re going to and have been to – and we’ll see if I can put together a proper list at the end of the summer!

Image via Shutterstock.