This Thursday will see the beginning of one of the UK’s biggest and best dance music festivals, celebrating it’s 10th year in the running – of course, it’s Bestival. Created and organised by DJ/record producer Rob Da Bank (Rob Gorham) and his wife Josie back in 2004, the four-day festival has grown in popularity over the years and is now recognised as one of the best in its category, winning the ‘Best Major UK Festival’ award at the UK Festival Awards for 2010 and 2012, and the ‘Fans Favorite Festival’ award for 2011. Initially attracting crowds of just over 10,000, the festival now accommodates a whopping 55,000 attendees each year.
This year Elton John, Snoop Dogg, and Fatboy Slim take center stage as headliners, along with an impressive line-up featuring some of the best names in the business, including M.I.A, Franz Ferdinand, Wu-Tang Clang, Bombay Bicycle Club, Disclosure, Jessie Ware and James Blake. A festival founded by a DJ is obviously going to make space for fellow DJs, and these big names come in equally large amounts. Some of radio’s finest will also be attending, including Annie Mac, Seth Troxler, Zane Lowe, Julio Bashmore and Maya Jane Coles, along with top producers forming an array of different genres; Joy Orbison, Loefah, Bondax, Addison Groove and Jaguar Skills to name a few. The festival’s entertainment line-up is also equally as exciting, with an array of arts, crafts, films, karaoke and other acts to keep you satisfied throughout all four days.
Bestival has become well known for its fancy dress theme, which set the Guinness World Record for most people in fancy dress at any one event back in 2010. This year holds a nautical theme aboard HMS Bestival, with Rob Da Bank excitedly stating upon its release that, “All the nice girls love a sailor and all the boys love a mermaid. Think deckhands, anchors, beach parties, Moby Dick, tattooed ladies, Titanic, shipwrecks, Hawaii, Treasure Island, rum bars in scuzzy ports, message in a bottle, the crows nest, sea legends, monster breakers and tall tales of life on the ocean waves. Nautical but nice!” No doubt many will put great thought into their outfits, judging from pictures from previous years where revellers have arrived in over-the-top and outrageous costumes to the delight of all involved.
With only a few days to go, excitement levels are peaking as attendees finish their packing and begin the journey down to the Isle of Wight – where the fun will all begin. I regret the fact that I’m not attending this year’s Bestival, but have decided to make it my go-to event of 2014. Fatboy Slim on the big screen will have to make do for me this year (sob). Enjoy everyone!
All photos included in this article were taken from this page on the Bestival website and are not images produced by the author of this article. All credits go to the photographers of these images.