We at Bitter Sweet Symphonies are firm believers that sometimes great things come in small packages, so we wanted to pull together our list of the best small, independent and family-friendly festivals, along with some of the best urban festivals that we think shouldn’t be missed this summer.
When…30th July – 2nd August
Where…Lowther Deer Park, Cumbria
Who’s playing…Kaiser Chiefs, Elbow, The Vaccines, Kodaline, The Horrors, Bipolar Sunshine, Lucy Rose, Hudson Taylor, Seafret, Blossoms, Port Isla and many more
Why you should go…Well other than the festival boasting the best line up this year. Kendal Calling offers up a warm, welcoming atmosphere, great for festival newbies and families that’s surrounded in beautiful open countryside.
For more info head here: http://www.kendalcalling.co.uk/
Dot to Dot
When…22nd May / 23rd May / 24th May
Where…Manchester / Bristol / Nottingham
Who’s playing…Swim Deep, Saint Raymond, Rae Morris, Fat White Family, Hudson Taylor, Best Coast, The Wytches, Prides and many more
Why you should go…As urban festivals go, Dot to Dot quite frankly is the king. This year promises to be even bigger for the festival, celebrating it’s 10th year running, and the line up is flawless. The festival is spread across 3 UK cities, each sharing the incredible line up but also each city boasts a few rare appearances from certain bands. Dot to Dot proves that venue hopping is the best way to enjoy live music and we couldn’t agree more.
For more info head here: http://www.dottodotfestival.co.uk/
Live at Leeds
When…1st – 4th May
Where…Leeds City Centre
Who’s playing…The Cribs, Slaves, Dry the River, Dutch Uncles, Eagulls, Hookworms, Lucy Rose, Rhodes, Saint Raymond, Swim Deep and many more
Why you should go…Live at Leeds offers the best homegrown talent and the best local talent from emerging bands like VITAMIN and The Orielles to big names like Spector and the Cribs. Live at Leeds are a festival that has everything, this year’s line up is no exception.
For more info head here: http://www.liveatleeds.com/
Where…Ouseburn Valley, Newcastle
Who’s playing…Lisbon, Hyde & Beast, Shields, Glass Caves, Sun Dance, Alexander and many more
Why you should go…Not only is Evolution Emerging the biggest event for emerging music in the North East, this year the line up is immaculate. With over 35 artists taking to the stages across 9 venues. It’s going to be one day packed full of delicious sounds and bubbling energy.
For more info head here: http://evolutionemerging.com/
When…3rd – 4th July
Where…Dunroamin, New Road, North Nibley, Gloucestershire
Who’s playing…Flyte, Bird to Beast, The Pigeon Detectives, Scouting For Girls
Why you should go…Surrounded by the rolling hills of the Cotswold’s, Nibley festival is in a picturesque location but it also features some great music. Perfect for a lazy summer’s day enjoying the sweet sounds of both old and new.
For more info head here: http://www.nibleyfestival.co.uk/
When…31st July – 2nd August
Who’s playing…Little Dragon, The Dandy Warhols, Basement Jaxx, The Horrors, Ella Eyre, Prides, Black Honey and many more
Why you should go…For a small festival, Standon Calling boasts a quite remarkable line up, set in quaint surroundings, this weekend promises to be a whole lot of fun.
For more info head here: https://www.standon-calling.com/
Barn on the Farm
When…3rd – 5th July
Where…Over Farm, Gloucestershire
Who’s playing…James Bay, Jack Garratt, Rhodes, Amber Run, Foy Vance, Nothing But Thieves, Port Isla, Osca, Flo Morrissey
Why you should go…Barn on the Farm steals the hearts of everyone that enters their lovely little festival, not in a murderous psychopath kind-of-way but in a charming and lovable sort-of-way. Last year’s line up seemed almost impossible to top but yet again they bring us a stellar line up complete with the best singer-songwriters that the UK has to offer alongside our best guitar bands. The festival sold out fast year, it’s going to do the same this year, so my only advice is to act fast!
For more info head here: http://www.barnonthefarm.co.uk/
When…29th – 31st May
Who’s playing…Lucy Rose, Palace, Demob Happy, Plastic Mermaids, Fickle Friends, Black Honey and many more
Why you should go…Wychwood promises an eclectic mix of music from yesteryear – UB40 and The Proclaimers – and new music from the likes of Brighton’s Fickle Friends and Black Honey.
For more info head here: http://www.wychwoodfestival.com/