This year we attended our very first family festival, Common People, which is literally right on our doorstep, in sunny Southampton and is situated on Southampton Common.
In order to get into the spirit of things, we pre-ordered our chunky face glitter and flowers for our hair, and chose our outfits ready for the day. To say that Finley was excited is an understatement, he could not wait to attend his first festival, and neither could we, so when we were finally all glittered up, we set off for the Common.
We parked down a side road nearby, which was free for the day and could already hear the buzz of music in the distance, then we took the short walk and made our way towards the ticket desk.
Once inside as we looked around there was just a sea of colour everywhere, with lots of colourful photo opportunities! We could see the main stage, and there was a traditional helter skelter and a big wheel, which of course caught Finley’s eye straight away, and not to mention the ice-cream van!
First stop was the kids corner, which featured a Circus tent which gave the opportunity to perfect your circus skills. Finley particularly enjoyed the trapeze bar and the Diablo. We also watched some fun performances put on by the Big Top Mania clowns and other circus performers, and Finley loved being the centre of attention when he took to the stage with the clowns to dance in front of the audience.
In this area there were also balancing beams, circus bicycles, stilts, bouncy castles and other rides, a van that we were able to put our own stamp on using a variety of paint provided, classic Punch and Judy shows, photo opportunities with the much loved Peppa Pig and much much more. We spent a good few hours in this area, there was always something going on.
There were various tents around with different music being performed by local artists, and there were also performances going on outside, like the band of drummers that were so cool to watch.
We were lucky enough to have tickets to the VIP area The Nook, and we would definitely recommend this, even just for the toilets alone! Everyone knows that the toilets at any festival get rather gross as the days go by, however the toilets here were ‘proper’ toilets, with a real flush and everything! There were also real sinks with real taps, that you didn’t have to pump with your foot, as well as actual soap to wash your hands, seriously any girl reading this will understand how important this stuff is!
Anyway, besides the luxury toilets the Nook was perfect for anyone wanting a prime viewing spot of the main stage, as well as lots of seating available, and a bar with short queues. Kids are also catered for well in this area, with a big sandpit for them to play in, as well as crafts including pasta necklaces, painted pebbles, and free face painting. Finley was in his element and had an absolute blast, and the beauty of the Nook was that we could come and go as we pleased.
We enjoyed wandering around, just taking it all in. Finley had a go on the helter skelter, and we both rode the big wheel together which was really fun, then we all enjoyed an ice-cream, which had to be eaten really quickly due to the gorgeous sun making them rather drippy!
Then we found a spot in front of the main stage where we sat ourselves on our picnic blanket, took off our shoes and stretched out, soaking in the atmosphere all around us. I then went and fetched us some dinner from one of the many food vans available, and we settled down to watch one of the main headline acts, All Saints! I must say I was so excited about seeing them, this was my era! And when they came on they definitely didn’t disappoint. I was instantly transported back to school days, where me and my friends used to make up dances and sing along to these same songs. It gave me a great sense of nostalgia, and the girls were still as great as I remember. Finley even enjoyed the performance and loved dancing along to their tunes.
We left before Lily Allen came on stage as Finley was getting tired, but luckily we got to our car just before the heavens opened, which we were so thankful for as we didn’t have a coat or umbrella between us!
We’d all absolutely loved our family festival experience, the atmosphere was just electric, and us and Finley had the best time.
“You know what music is? God’s little reminder that there’s something else besides us in the universe; harmonic connection between all living beings, everywhere, even the stars” ~ Robin Williams
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