I don’t have much success when it comes to festivals. As I’ve previously written, I went to Global Gathering back in July 2009 and it was quite possibly one of the worst experiences of my life. We ended up having to be rescued by my best friends step dad and I spent the rest of the weekend in bed.
Following that unfortunate experience I vowed to never put myself through anything like that again and resolved that the only time I’d ever willingly go to an outdoor music event was if I didn’t have to camp.
So, when the opportunity to buy tickets for V Festival 2016 presented itself, complete with hotel option even I could see what a brilliant opportunity this would be.
As many of you will know (if you don’t then where have you been all year?), myself and my best friend turned 30 earlier this year and as a result we wanted 2016 to be the year we celebrated in style. And haven’t we just. We’ve had so much fun this year. Too much in fact, as my credit card balance informed me this week. I’ve calculated it’s going to take me 32 months to pay that bad boy off. But more on that another time.
The week leading up to V Festival was full of excitement, especially because the weather forecast looked so damn good. Of course, we know how quickly this can change, it is Great Britain after all and it is supposed to be the summer.
We were determined no amount of wind and no amount of rain would put a dampener on our weekend of music, drink, dancing and just general fun. And it didn’t, it could have done at times mind you (more on that later).
As I enter my 5th day of post festival blues I thought it would be great to relive one of the best weekends I’ve ever had by documenting my 10 best moments of V Festival 2016. So, have a little read on, I’m sure it’ll just be like you were there with me. Honest.
We’d not long arrived at V Festival on Saturday afternoon. The showers were consistent and they were blustery (thank god for the umbrellas we’d brought, although my hair had a mind of its own) but we found ourselves a little spot where we could sit and enjoy the music. I’ve never been much of a Travis fan. I remember thinking they were SO DULL as a teenager growing up in the late nineties/early noughties but oh my days, I now consider myself to be a fully-fledged Travis fan. Their set was the soundtrack to a perfect hour of getting drunk and singing (badly) along to the songs that reminded me of being a kid. Who knew we would remember all of the words? Even if at the start of every song I was convinced it was Driftwood.
My fringe did not like the wind. At all.
The excitement was too much when we could hear All Saints blasting out as we were going through the various security checks (it was like fort knocks I swear) upon arrival on Saturday noon. Dancing to Pure Shores, with umbrella in one hand and (overpriced) cocktail in the other with the rain lashing down was a lot of fun.
Loving All Saints.
8.Years and Years
It was at this point I was well on my way to drunksville. A quick costume change (I always do this at outdoor music events – don’t ask why) and I was embracing V Festival in all its glory. The rain had stopped and the beer, wine and cocktails were definitely taking effect. We moved from our previous area and got closer to the front and had at this point found a couple of men who were also having the time of their lives. Cue lots of dodgy dancing amongst all of us, until we spotted their wives giving us quite the glare. We soon moved on at this point, if looks could kill we’d have been 6ft under (a rather muddy field).
I first saw Example not long after his first big tune back in 2010 and he was immense. And yet again he didn’t disappoint. Despite forgetting he was at Staffordshire and not Chelmsford and telling the Staffordshire crowd that we’re better than those “TOWIE pricks” (his words not mine) he put on such a brilliant set. Banging out all of his well-known tunes. Unfortunately, for me, at this stage my memory is somewhat hazy. I attribute this to the bottle of wine I’d coiffed. On the subject of the wine, never ever purchase wine at a festival. I think downing a gallon of petrol would be better tasting.
When we awoke on Sunday morning we felt a little fragile. Despite the fact we’d curtailed our drinking at around 10pm, the previous day’s events had certainly taken their toll on us both (we are 30 now after all). So, we decided to have a bit of a lazy morning and head back to the site in the early afternoon. The weather was glorious when we arrived at around 2pm but soon the clouds began to rumble in and shortly after Stormzy’s set (never heard of him before, I know I’m so uncool – he was, however, brilliant) the rain decided to hit us hard. Out come the brollies just as Bastille took to the stage. Their rendition of TLC’s No Scrubs was superb and they put on a fantastic performance that the audience really appreciated. Following a short break, Jess Glynne took to the stage, I was in the queue for the toilets at this point (more on that later). She began her slot with Don’t Be So Hard On Yourself, and I thought nothing of singing along and having a little dance while in the toilet queue. If you can’t do it at a festival when can you? Her voice was faultless and despite the rain being utterly disgusting throughout her set, we really didn’t care.
We made the very wise decision to leave Years and Years part way through their performance to go on a discovery. AND I AM SO GLAD WE DID. I have been a fan of Katy B ever since she provided the vocals on a track called Tell Me way back in 2008. I just adore her. We had a proper dance to her back catalogue of utter tunes and managed to get chatted up by a bunch of 23 year olds in the process too (I swear everyone was 23 that weekend).
If you’d have pulled me to one side 4 years ago and told me I was to enjoy Justin Bieber’s music when I was in my 30’s I would have laughed in your face. Hard. But guess what? I now classify myself as a ‘Belieber’. As if by magic, the rain that had besieged us for hours at this point, stopped just as the superstar took to the stage. We’d heard rumours that Bieber had been miming throughout his performance on Saturday at Chelmsford. And while I’m pretty there was lip syncing in Staffordshire on the Sunday, he still didn’t disappoint. Even if he did take a slightly weird turn when he announced his love for Pop Tarts whilst chowing down on one mid performance. Myself and my best friend have huge love for his track Love Yourself. This is mainly down to a scene that went viral in Big Brother a couple of months ago. When he sang it we were in our element.
3.Craig David/Little Mix
Little Mix are such a decent girl band. They can dance and they can sing. Once we’d left Katy B we headed back to the main stage to enjoy the remainder of their performance. I cannot tell you how excited we were when Craig David took to the stage to join them for a special performance of Rewind (Bo Selecta). The crowd (including us) went nuts and it was such a brilliant surprise.
Thank God for the pink wig. Kept my hair frizz free!
Seeing Craig David in the dance tent on Saturday night was well worth missing Rihanna for (we saw her a few years ago so it wasn’t too disappointing – and we did manage to catch the last half an hour too). He was banging out the tunes with absolute gusto, taking us on a trip down memory lane by playing songs we’d grown up with by other artists and of course his own anthems. Craig is looking seriously hot at the moment so my teenage crush on him has once again been reignited (I wish I still had that life size poster of him).
Sober. Very, very sober.
Chandelier is my 2nd favourite song of all time. It’s also my most played track on my iTunes so you can imagine my utter excitement when I learnt that Sia was performing at V Festival. I just love everything about her. The rain, as hellish as it was, could not have stopped us from enjoying Sia any less. Maddie, her dancer from Dance Moms fame accompanied her and put on a flawless performance. I loved Cheap Thrills (complete with my best friend taking on the role of Sean Paul) but the best bit for me, was of course Chandelier. What a moment that was. So much so I lost my head for a couple of minutes, as the video below portrays. The mud and the weather couldn’t deter me from showcasing my appreciation for such an incredible moment.
Good job I don’t embarrass easily.
1.The whole bloody experience
From start to finish V Festival was just such an incredible weekend. It’s so hard pinpointing the best moments (I just realised I missed David Guetta out an’ all), all I know is that we laughed constantly. From the toilet revolt (yes we staged a full on revolt against the piss poor plans security had come up with for the female toilets) through to waiting a whopping 3 hours for our shuttle bus to come and collect us at the end of the night in the pouring down rain; we just didn’t stop having fun. Even if I felt so ill on the Saturday night through lack of food, I led down on the field and refused to move until my best friend had got a medic over so we could “get an ambulance home”. Yes, I am a drama queen and yes she did tell me I was being ridiculous.
Although waiting 3 hours in the cold, dark and the pouring down rain for our shuttle bus could’ve reduced me to a crying wreck (I’m so high maintenance) we refused to let it dampen our spirits and using my iTunes, we had our own little party in the queue on Sunday night, with the friends we’d made from Oop Norf joining in too.
You may think we took the easy way out by staying in a hotel and perhaps we did but you cannot put a price on a comfy bed (and my god was it comfy), a decent breakfast and a hot shower the following day to wash away the sins.
Spending time with my best friend was amazing. She was the perfect companion and I know we will spend months if not years looking back on V Festival and regaling each other with our memories and stories.
I’ve lost count of the amount of times I’ve had a browse through the photos of V Festival, laughing to myself as I remember certain moments. We are 100% going next year, even if I have to sell a kidney to get a ticket. Although not my right kidney as that’s been hurting a bit this week and I can’t imagine anyone would want that after last weekend!
Too much love for this girl. Already counting down the days until our next adventure.