Hope Festival

You see!!  This is why we hate Sat Nav!!  And embarrassingly, we even know where Biggin Hill is…

Sat Navs are like drugs – you can become dependent, even though you don’t need them.  And if you do use, you may have a bad experience.  Many bad experiences. Like being sent the wrong way around that orbital delight, the M25.  Into a bumper to bumper traffic jam.

I gently simmered suggesting we ‘throw the flamin’ thing out of the window’ followed quickly by “can you find the nearest petrol station first – we’ve only fumes left….”

Eventually we arrived at Hope and what a cracker it turned out to be.  Unless you were out of the country, in a cave, or having a bad sat nav trip, you’ll be acutely aware that the weather was…err….’changable’.  But delicately placed between ‘showers’ (ahem) we had the most glorious sunshine and what a smile maker that bright, burning ball of gas was.  Yes, we do care about the farmers crops and the current issues with our reservoirs, but there is no denying that parents work to a pretty simple formula:

Sunny day

1 piece of dry ground + 4 year + 1 year old
___________________________________                                    = 2 mellow parents + 2 happy kids
2 parents + 1/2/many (delete as appropriate) ales + white wines


Rainy day

1 piece of wet ground + wet 4 year old + unrecognisable mud covered 1 year old
______________________________________________________________________      = smile with jaw ache from clenched teeth
2 sodden parents + 2 cold hands + 2 untouched beverages

Our camp was formidable.  For starters, we had so many parents in our group it made for a kind of  ‘perma crèche’.  Someone always happy to take control for an hour allowing us to slope off for a bit to check out the bands.  Then, of course,  we had Matt ‘The Fire’ with us.  Our very own Bear Grylls who this year created a ‘fire exclusion zone’ for the ankle biters prior to him rubbing two sticks together to create a veritable inferno.  The man is a genius with fuego and we all bow to his combustion prowess.  Oh and Matt, we think we may have a leatherman holder of yours.  Don’t worry, we’ve treated it with a silicone based sealant to ensure it remains weatherproof.  We hope that’s right..

The music was of course, the star of the weekend.  It was absolutely exceptional.  With truly great performances from the acclaimed Glenn Tilbrook and his friends Nine Below Zero and to end Saturday night, a right roof raiser from Ska Daddy on the main stage. No amount of rain was going to dampen spirits.  The Ska skank was always going to happen but perhaps not with such enthusiasm as it did that Saturday night.  Ska Daddy considered the line between performance and audience to be blurred and that the evening was just one big party.  We couldn’t agree more.

And let’s not forget Hope’s Got Talent.  Yes it has.  Bundles of it.  Our very own Dora from camp crèche pulled off an absolute corker of a performance at the festival talent show and we all had huge respect for the young gymnast capable of multiple back flips… in a ploughed field!

So that was Hope.  Great bands, great people, great talent and according to our four year old “a great bouncy castle”.  See you there next year x


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