Latitude 2016 Review – A Family Festival For Them and Us
  • August 1, 2016
  • Zac Ghaffar Co-founder, The Inside Edit

    Latitude Festival 2016 x The Inside Edit
     

    Glastonbury, Leeds, Reading, Latitude, Isle of White – the idea of a festival, mainly for Leti, was crowds of heavily intoxicated people, muddy fields, dirty toilets, cold tents and poor personal hygiene. So not the best impression of it all! and of course not a fair one either! Having never been to a festival, this was of course a massive pre-conception and the idea of going with two kids was pretty much Ha! Yeah Right!

     

    But after a recent discussion we decided to take the plunge and go all or nothing with a four day festival bonanza, camping et al. Our elected festival was none other than LATITUDE – one of the UK’s most popular festivals with  special credit for how family friendly it is.

     

    We also did our first ever Instagram Takeover – the brave folks at Cybex, who kindly gave a bad ass All terrain Priam, also gave us full control of their popular Instagram account, so we could post freely about what we’re up to.

     

    So here is our review of it all and our personal story as a young family of four with what the experience has to offer. I should add that this article finishes with a video we have prepared (which has had an equal amount of thought and love put into it!).

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    throw out the rules and become a modern hippy family for a few days!

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    So we decided to escape the urban smog, throw out the rules and become a modern hippy family for a few days, Or at least we were convinced that was the way to do it anyway – to ignore the family diet, the bedtime routine, the do’s and don’t that become synonymous with everyday life and allow the festival spirit to dictate our way!
     

    After a few hours of getting lost and signs insisting on us not using our sat nav, we arrived to an incredibly well staffed and well organised event. You’re directed from one checkpoint to next before arriving into the family camping area, and at the timely hour of 9pm we began pitching up. Our munchkins held the torches (our iphones) as we clumsily put our tent together and before long we were all settled into our new home!

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    After a sensible early night we approached the next few days with more vigour, building our collective stamina to ensure no stone is left unturned and introducing the kids to more of the adult stuff as the days went by. Latitude is an eclectic haven of live music, comedy shows, film and a full programme of civilized frivolity for not just hardened festival goers but culture vultures and wide eyed young families too. It is also the UK’s most unashamedly middle-class festival, where you can find yourself in a polite queue or pay a “charity concierge” £5 to queue for you, all while doing yoga by the lake!
     

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    It is also the UK’s most unashamedly middle-class festival

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    Our kids being the ages they are, the Kids Area and Enchanted Garden were our hang outs, Bo Nana Fana Social Club put on quite the show and were even offering free massages for adults! We literally did everything, from face painting to creating miniature short films with props collected from the forest. Our daughter is at the age where she wants to be like mummy and I think all Leti wanted to do was dress up as a superhero.

     

     

    With little hesitation we can say we’re official fans, already discussing what type of tent upgrade we need for next year! Our time there went by in a sun-kissed haze of happiness, we were enveloped by the spirit of a truly magical festival, where great performances a sense of togetherness allowed us to forget about the gloominess of recent headlines. We created memories akin to those from our own precious childhood summers. We met a father and daughter in the queue for the shower and they talked about their passion for this festival. He spoke about his anticipation to experience it each year with his daughter, and with equal vigor, his daughter showed us her collection of wrist bands going back 3 years, never removed! Gross and cute and the same time.

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    a chance to relive the wide eyed innocence and joy of our youth whilst giving us the ability to indulge in good music and adult culture

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    At it’s best, that is what Latitude offers as a family experience – a chance to relive the wide eyed innocence and joy of our youth whilst giving us the ability to indulge in good music and adult culture. Sometimes parenting can feel like a gulf opening up between what YOU want to do and what THEY want/should be doing and as Kipling put it ‘Never the twain shall meet again’. Latitude is the opposite of this. They do meet again, and it is among colourful sheep roaming the tufty fields.
     
    You’re entertained by music, comedy, arts and more, and doing this with your kids gives them a different perspective. Unlike a lot of the exhibition spaces offered in places such as London, it’s a more forgiving and patient setting for family too, where your pushchair and small clan is as welcome as anyone else.
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    The festival brought out sides in us and our kids that we didn’t know we had. The kids acted a little wilder, perhaps owing to the general atmosphere, and we became much more relaxed about a lot things – like what they were eating for example. It was junk food heaven!
     

    Before we give you details on useful info and must-have’s, we are super excited to share with you our video from the festival. It’s only taken 10 days to finish (there was almost three and a half hours of footage to painstakingly edit) but it’s the one we’ve put most into and we hope it’ll give you a good sense of what the experience has to offer. We’ve included performances by Lumineers, M83, The National, Churches and New Order!

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    So just lastly, Leti and I want to share with you a few key bits of info and must have’s if you’re thinking of hitting this festival as a family.
     

    Ticket Cost:

    If you are family camping you’ll need to buy the Family Camping version of your ticket. It’s £200 per adult, kids under 4 go free. You may argue this is a lot but think how much a ticket costs to go see a top band perform live… multiply this a few times and add a few comedy shows and other activities then it all makes sense!
     

    Facilities:
     
    The family area has hot showers, the toilets are clean and they have loo roll. The facilities are great!

     

    Food and Drink:

    A pint costs roughly £5, and typical meal for one is around £8-£10. You can’t bring your alcohol or water into the main area. Try to plan ahead as much as possible as you’ll easily get carried away spending on food and drink.

     

    Taking photos and videos:

    If you’re planning on taking lots of photographic/video gear then bear in mind they’ll probably stop you when entering the main area. If your’re thinking of using your phone a lot remember to sign up to the mobile charging service. You can swap charging units at handy stations dotted around the festival. Super helpful!

     

    What to pack: 

    Be sure to pack ear defenders for the kids, sun hats, wellies, suncream, waterproofs, a set of warm clothes, lots of wet wipes  and lots of healthy snacks. A lot of people had wagons/trollies of varying sorts, we had a pushchair but I think this is something worth investing in for next time. They not only help with carrying lots of things but the kids can sit and sleep in them, helping you stay out till later.

     

    Other Tips

    Pick up the programme! It’s a £10 book but you should do this in order to plan your activities and understand fully whats on offer. It’s also best not to rely on your phone as the battery life won’t last you long. Also, not surprising, but you’ll hear a fair bit of swearing… you’ll just have to manage this the best way you can.

     

    EXTERNAL LINKS:

    Latitude Festival

    Cybex

     

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