Last weekend I went to a festival called ‘Gentlemen of the Road’. This festival is a little different to normal festivals as it has many different ‘stopovers’ rather than being based in one town. This year it went to 5 different places, mainly in the US but they also had one in Lewes which is near Brighton (UK). The whole thing is the brainchild of Mumford and Sons, one of my favourite bands of the moment. Their music is just beautiful and so full of feeling. I absolutely love them.
They designed these ‘stopovers’ to not only enjoy amazing music but also to involve the local people and their culture.
“the spirit of the project remains: a music festival that celebrates local people, food and culture, where everyone pitches in and everybody gets something back.”
Source : http://www.gentlemenoftheroad.com/stopovers/
This really was apparent as soon as you walked into the venue, and what a venue. It helps that the town itself is also gorgeous. We arrived a day early as we had a long(ish) car ride and wanted to make sure we weren’t rushed in putting up our tent. As we drove through the town we noted how quaint and pretty it was, for any Yorkshire people reading this, it reminded us a lot of Beverly.
We weren’t camping at the official campsite but another one called ‘Spring Barn Farm’, a really quaint little farm with lots of animals for kiddies to see and a lovely little farm shop.
As we were a day early we were one of the first to set up and so had the pick of the field (at least of the area we were allowed in)! Obviously we went for a nice flat spot with a good view and not too close to the toilets or bins (you don’t want the smell to waft over now do you!). After we’d set up we relaxed with a few ciders and a bbq. A very nice, quiet relaxed evening.
The next day the main events didn’t start until around 5, we we’re able to spend most of the day under the baking sun, in our bikini’s, watching everyone struggle with their tents in the heat. It was lovely.
We had been informed that the campsites barn had been set up to have a little bar and food area (apparently the bar would be open until 2am!). We didn’t go there for breakfast as we had plenty of bacon and eggs, but we just couldn’t resist the lure of ice cream! I imagine they made a pretty penny with that bar as it always seemed busy, it was definitely a good idea for them and just what the campers wanted!
To get to the festival we had to walk for about a mile through fields, I’m pretty sure i’ve walked longer through a campsite at a festival before and so the fact we we’re walking through some pretty fields rather than in between tents was very welcomed.
Once we got there the queues weren’t that bad at all, although we had got there early (Again) and so missed most of the waiting it seems. Some people said they had to wait around 45minutes just to get their wristbands! I think that was just down to needing more staff and in all honesty I’ve waited longer at V fest. If that was the only problem they had for the whole weekend then they did a pretty damn good job in my opinion. The whole thing was definitely very well run from what I saw.
As soon as we walked in we we’re greeted with rows of waving flags, coats of arms and old style food stalls. It was almost like being whisked back to medieval time, that’s if it wasn’t for the giant glowing letters spelling out ‘Gentlemen of The Road’. It did have a modern feel to an old style and was very in-keeping with the town it was situated in and the grounds (which looked like an old castle or monastery) the event actually took place in. It really set the mood, a great start to a great event.
On the first day we saw bands such as Youth Lagoon, British Sea Power and Vampire Weekend. It was a great line up and great start to the festival. Vampire Weekend are always great and we had a good dance and sing along.
As always at festivals there was a lot of interesting outfits. The usual festival wear; bright flowers, crop tops, dungerees, plaits, hippie-esq outfits etc… There was also a lot of fancy dress including a couple of bananas, home made t-shirts as well as a lot of merch t-shirts bought and then immediately worn. I took a lot of pictures of the festival fashions (which made me feel oh so stalker-ish) and will be doing a blog post on the do’s and don’ts of festivals and festival fashions in the near future.
All too soon it was time to head back to the campsite. The way was nicely lit and they had lots of marshals to make sure you didn’t get lost.
The next day started just as relaxed as the day before. The arena didn’t open until the afternoon leaving us plenty of time to sit around and get ourselves ready.
We bought some posh bread and Brie from the farm shop, we we’re living the dream and felt very middle class. We had the brie with some bacon and rolls we had leftover for breakfast (it was mouthwateringly amazing) and then saved some of the brie and the fancy bread to take into the venue as nibbles.
The line up on the second day was again amazing, including Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, The Mystery Jets, The Vaccines (one of my mums favourite bands) and (of course!) Mumford and Sons.
There were also some lesser known bands playing. One of my favourites of these being Bears Den who had some Hauntingly beautiful music.
As the day went on the bands just kept getting better and soon we were on our feet constantly dancing away! The arena was getting packed but still we danced around as if no one was watching and loving it! (although maybe the cider had something to do with our dance moves…)
By the time Mumford and sons came on we could barely see the stage, but we didn’t care. All the performances we’re amazing, everyone really put a lot into it and it was obvious by the crowds reactions that their time and effort was much appreciated.
Usually at a festival you find that there’s at least one or two acts that just aren’t all that great, they don’t seem to want to be there or just aren’t very good live. But every one of them was brilliant. Maybe it’s because it’s quite small compared to others so the acts are more carefully selected, but it definitely made the whole experience a lot more enjoyable.
At the end of Mumford and Sons set they invited ALL the other acts onto the stage and they all jammed together! It was incredible.
Then the after party started with ‘The Very Best Sound System’ which was very dancey with an african feel. Definitely a great end to the festival.
The whole thing was just so well put together, Mumford and Sons (and their team) have done such a good job.
We ended up partying well into the night and had a lazy morning whilst watching everyone pack up their tents. All too soon we too had to pack up and leave, I was sad to leave after such an awesome weekend but was most definitely looking forward to a shower!
If one of the Stopovers comes near you then I highly recommend going! (as long as you like the music of course).It was such an amazing weekend and I will most certainly be going next year if they’re around again!
So thank you to all the organisers, Spring barn farm and Mumford and Sons for a really great weekend away! I hope to see you all next year!
‘Till next time
I made a cute little spring treasury on Etsy and thought i’d share it on here with my reasons for picking each object. 🙂 You can find my treasury here.
I tried to look for pastel colours, flowers, and a bright cheerful feeling, all the things that just shout spring to me! There were so many cute items it was hard to narrow it down, but in the end this is what I came up with:
It’s kind of hard to believe these aren’t real. Who wouldn’t want these to brighten up their living room? They wont die like real flowers and can come in a range of colours to suit your room! Definitely a good choice if you always forget to water or buy new plants like me.
I love how unusual this bracelet is. The branch with the first hint of flower is adorable and reminds me of the trees just starting to blossom.
Want a big bright statement piece that makes winter vanish to memory? Then this is surely the necklace for you. Its bright, fun and cheerful and just makes me smile.
This necklace is cute and fresh, just what you need to chase away the cold british winter. The straw like string adds a touch of the unusual and the flowers add that cute feminine touch. All together a very adorable little necklace.
Spring is a time for new life, eggs are being laid and flowers are blossoming, so why not feel part of it by wearing some ‘eggs’ on your ears? Not only are these adorable, but I think they would go perfectly with the necklace above!
Well we’ve had the eggs so we obviously needed some birds as well! I love the twig and flowers at the top of this mobile and the birds finish it off beautifully. I can just see this in a little girls nursery, but to be honest i’d really want to steal this for myself. It is definitely one to enjoy no matter what your age is.
Want to look like a flowery meadow? Well then this is the necklace for you. Crammed full of cute little flowers this statement necklace is bound to turn heads and make any outfit look fantastic.
This is the kind of dress I can imagine wearing on a warm spring day/evening whilst prancing around a meadow. It’s just stunning. Maybe the weather isn’t quite warm enough for it yet, but it’s getting there. Although I’m not sure if i’d dare wear it out of the house myself for fear of ruining it!
It’s impossible not to think about snowdrops when spring is mentioned and these earrings seem to mimic them beautifully. Bring a touch of classy elegance to your outfit by wearing these, i’d personally wear them with my hair up just to make sure they’re noticed!
I don’t know what to really say about this dress other than just simply ‘Wow’. The delicate lace and pastel colours seem to compliment the freshness of spring and really does make me think of flower fairies dancing in the evening light.
From classic to just plain cute! Everyone loves deers and this necklace is just adorable!
Another animal that reminds me of spring is the little baby ducklings! If I could I’d buy lots of these little figurines and make a line of them that I could imagine were waddling towards a nice little picturesque pond.
Another statement necklace with some bold pink flowers and green beads. A modern, but some how classic, look to really attract the compliments.
Gold, Silver, Diamond. What more does a girl want? This delicate little ring would certainly draw in my attention and leave me completely green in envy! The vein detail on the flower really finishes this piece off and I can imagine I would spend hours tracing them with my eyes.
It may be listed as a wedding Item, but I would wear this despite not even being engaged yet. I love the messy vintage glamour this seems to exude. What better way to feel at one with nature than to be wearing this gorgeous piece.
Another statement necklace for the demure woman in you. A string of pearls with a bunch of flowers, a fresh addition to a smart outfit.
I hope you like these Items as much as I do, I had a lot of fun putting it together.
Till next time!