Upcoming summer festival season: a glimpse​ at the glitter

Written by Gabbie Wright |

Whether you are a religious festival-goer or completely new to the game, perhaps you’d just like to find out what is currently on offer to you, is it worth it? In this article, we take a glimpse at the line up of 2019s summer music festivals and what you can expect from a few of them. Be it close to campus with the returning annual Boardmasters in Newquay, the Masked Ball Festival, or enticing a road trip up North to Leeds. Whatever your budget there’s a chance for you to embrace a few days of takeaway food, drink, mud, and music in true festival style. Here’s all you need to know about some of the longstanding greats, and their impressive new competition:

Glastonbury Festival, Glastonbury, Somerset

Glastonbury is perhaps the most prestigious festival of all time. Based in Somerset, this five-day extravaganza celebrates its 50th gig this summer and has in its lifetime hosted the likes of Beyonce, Adele, Amy Winehouse, Stevie Wonder, and Bowie to name a few. Worthy Farm puts on a show to festival lovers of all ages and interests, with 12 major stages and over 100 music venues altogether, genres range from pop to alternative rock to folk. Rain or shine the music will continue in full swing, so wellies are essential!

The festival of contemporary performing arts runs from Wednesday 26th June – Sunday 30th June this year and will include impressive sets from Kylie, The Killers, The Cure, Tame Impala, Miley Cyrus, Bastille, and Janet Jackson.

Whilst general ticket release is in the October prior to the summer festival and infamously sells out within a matter of minutes, if you are lucky enough to secure yourself a ticket, you may have to opt-out of Christmas presents for the family as you can expect it to set you back around £250 (This year’s pricing was £248 + £5 booking fee). Glasto isn’t exactly student-loan friendly, but whilst this might be one of the most expensive advertised out there, it’s definitely a festival experience like no other!

The best of Glastonbury 2017 | BBCMusic / Youtube

The Masked Ball, Cornwall

The Masked Ball is at the smaller end of the spectrum when it comes to summer shindigs no doubt, and yet it has earnt itself a reputation among the most sensational festivals of its size. This year’s Spring Ball, the first edition of three within the annual Ball calendar, takes place from 3rd-5th May 2019 amongst the panoramic views of Mount’s Bay in the fishing village of Porthleven, Cornwall.

The Masked Ball also currently hosts two other events taking place later in the year, the New Years Eve bash and voodoo-themed Halloween Ball are notorious in their niche splendour throughout Europe much like the Spring Ball, and have together amassed far beyond the original 200 ballers in attendance.

“…An immersive, multi-level party kingdom with ballers all dressed to excess in a venue carved out of the cliffs…” 

The independent festival offers an array of affairs and activities throughout the Spring show inclusive of a variety of intimate dancefloors, paddleboarding opportunities, dens, hidden bars and hot tub discos alike.

…A certified seaside spectacle…

The Spring Ball second release tickets currently available to buy will cost you £89.95 for the weekend with camping, but a three-event ‘Top Baller’ ticket grants you entrance to the year’s calendar of performances and will set you back only £150 which is less than most festivals alone.

What’s also great about this is that your plans are split up throughout the year, and so will fit perfectly around both the Falmouth and Exeter university schedules in particular, to tie in with when you’re in Cornwall.

If you’re on a budget, maybe looking to plan something with your uni pals but can’t figure out when or where to meet up outside of the library or Mangos, immerse yourself in this certified seaside spectacle just down the road and support your local area at the same time.

Boardmasters, Newquay, Cornwall

“A forty-minute drive from campus” | Alex Rawson / Boardmasters Festival

This younger festival is but a forty-minute drive from campus and is hosting note-worthy headliners Foals and Florence and The Machine this year. Boardmasters welcomes a wealth of aspiring acoustic artists and has seen the likes of award-winning Ben Howard perform locally at the beginning of his career on The View stage.

The festival caters to surfers, skateboarders, swimmers and sunbathers alike, offering the very best of the Cornish coast for five days of competitions, activities and excellent alternative music. Fistral beach sets the scene for both novice surfing lessons available throughout the festival, and the world-class professionals taking part in the on-going WSL qualifying series that is free to watch for all of the hungover spectators.

“A unique festival experience” | Sam Neill / Boardmasters Festival

“From the first wave to the last beat, Boardmasters brings like-minded souls together for a unique festival experience. With parties that run late into the night, and beautiful beaches on which to recuperate during the day, we invite you to become part of our story”

If you want to make the most of your time, Boardmasters offers a safe and picturesque venue popular among younger crowds. Tickets use a tier pricing system and are currently on sale in Tier 4 (most expensive) therefore the earlier you purchase in the year the less you pay. Despite this, at £197 the Boardmasters ticket is still fetching a lower figure than many of the other big gigs out there.

“See you at the beach” 2019 promo | Boardmasters / Youtube

Truck Festival, Oxfordshire

Truck was founded in 1998 and offers a different approach to the festival style, suggesting the likes of Glastonbury and other mainstream festivals are too predictable and overly commercialised.

With a lineup that sees Kate Nash, Lewis Capaldi, My Nu Leng, You Me At Six and Two Door Cinema Club take to the six stages, Truck succeeds year on year to entice the population with a compilation of alternative artists performing amongst the idyllic Oxfordshire countryside.

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This sun is getting us excited ??

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Taking place from 26th-28th July 2019, a weekend camping ticket will set you back £120 in the current Tier 4. However, if you’re not a student that’s too bothered about your budget…

(Who do you think you are?)

There are tons of unique glamping experiences available at this festival, setting it apart from the mud and sand that the others seem to boast infamously within the UK. If you’d prefer to not ruin your favourite clothes or sport four-day matted hair braids, this offers slightly more appeal.

“As a festival, we think all events should be accessible and we know that to truly champion accessibility and be one of the industry standard bearers, we need to meet all needs and requirements of all our customers”

Truck also caters to those needs beyond private loos and hair dryers, if you’re concerned you might not be able to go to a festival due to issues with accessibility, do your research! Truck and the majority of events offer specialist and personalised options for all of those in attendance, regardless of ability, to ensure everyone can enjoy the experience without any difficulty.

The access applications for Truck are now live online.

Reading/Leeds Fest, Reading and Leads

The Great British party-goer paradise: proper mud, over 150,000 in attendance, and an incredibly competitive lineup year on year, Reading and Leeds put on a show for those not of the faint-hearted, and one that every student and his brother should experience at least once before they graduate.

Taking place across the two venues from Friday 23rd August – Sunday 25th August in the summer, the indie-rock line up will rotate in performance location and includes sets from Foo Fighters, Royal Blood, Charli XCX, Sundara Karma, Post Malone, and Twenty One Pilots.

“A coming of age experience that many students, or people who’ve previously spurned the advances of fun in a field, use to lose their live music and camping cherry. Metaphorically speaking of course, although the other has been known”

Mike Warburton | Leeds and Reading Festival 2018 Virgin’s Guide
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What's your favourite R&L stage? ??

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Expect an experience with grit, be willing to suspend your disbelief (and all hygiene protocol) and have a very up-for-anything attitude toward this festival in order to make the most of it. If you can’t hack a bad night’s sleep then this is not the place for you. The music will not stop, the weather may be total sh*t, but it’s the perfect opportunity to sesh hard and get far too comfortable with your friends. Be safe! And sure to keep this one in your summer calendar.

Tickets for Reading and Leeds are on sale now: day passes available at £76.50, weekend tickets at £220.

Community Festival, Finsbury Park, London

Taking place on the 30th June this year, Community is a one-day festival celebrating the best upcoming and established names on the current music scene. Set across Finsbury Park, Community offers the perfect 24-hour spectacle for young people on a summer schedule… HELLO STUDENTS. Thinking it can’t be anything that special if it’s only on for a day? Check out this year’s familiar faces:

Including sets from headliners The Kooks, plus Blossoms, The Hunna, Kate Nash, The Night Cafe and The Amazons.

You can secure yourself a ticket now for a mere £40, so not really stretching the loan, is it? It’s the perfect way to kick off the summer without having to spend your following weeks working to rejuvenate funds.

Organising transport is simple enough too. Unlike Glasto and a few others in the countryside, Finsbury Park will not permit hours of single-track road congestion. You can be in London from Penzance within a straight 5 hours on the train for £25.

All in all a definite must if you want to experience the festival scene without making a week’s commitment away from work, or blowing a ton of money. Dip your toes in with this one, and you’ll never look back.