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Pack your sunblock and pull on your wellies: for summer 2021, music festivals are back on the bill.
Though some of the UK's biggest festivals, like Field Day, Boomtown, Creamfields, Reading and Leeds, have all sold out in record time thanks to our collective desire to get out and have the time of our lives this summer, the good news is that there are plenty of UK outdoor festivals which still have tickets left — and they have your name on them.
From indie to techno, via metal, jazz, comedy and sausages, you can be sure there’s an exciting line-up to suit all ages, interests and musical tastes this summer.
As we look forward to an unprecedented summer of fun, here are the outdoor festivals to add to your calendar which all have tickets available to book right now. We’ll see you by the stage...
When: 29 July - 1 August 2021
Where: Lulworth Castle, Dorset
From the world’s biggest bouncy castle to an incredible fireworks display and a stellar line up of artists, the multi-award winning Bestival is as much a family holiday as it is a music festival. Fatboy Slim, Becky Hill, Groove Armada, Kelis and the Vengaboys lead the line-up, while this year also sees the addition of a new comedy venue hosted promising secret sets from big names, a dedicated teen festival-within-the-festival, and the fest’s new foodie ambassador Fred Sirieix debuting a delicious offering of street food.
When: 27- 30 August 2021
Where: Victoria Park, London
The massive and much-loved East London festival will return this summer with an exciting line-up of huge acts including London Grammar, Jorja Smith, Jamie XX, Kano, Slowthai, Lil Simz, Foals and Bombay Bicycle Club. While this year’s iteration will take place over a more slimmed-down three days instead of its usual ten, you can bet that the vibes on every single one of those days are going to be immaculate.
When: 27 - 29 August 2021
Where: Hoe Park, Plymouth
Deadmau5 will headline the 1 Big Summer festival this August Bank Holiday in Plymouth, offering up a weekend of entertainment to suit all genres and tastes - quite literally. The party starts on Friday with Ibiza Classics 2021, which will see a full live 26-piece orchestra transport listeners through three decades of iconic white isle classics. Then, Saturday brings the main event: a day festival billed as “the party we’ve all been waiting for” featuring the aforementioned Mr Mau5 as well as an array of UK chart toppers. The Sunday of the festival is where things get really exciting, though, as the weekend makes way for ‘The Great British Sausage and Cider Festival’ - magic words if ever we heard them.
When: 11 - 15 August 2021
Where: Catton Park, Derbyshire
Don’t let the name fool you: heavy metal haven Bloodstock has a reputation for being the loveliest, friendliest festival in the country. The perfect dichotomy of spacious, family village vibes with delightfully blood-curdling metal bands, if you’re a heavy metal fan, this is the place to be. That's especially true for 2021, as the fest is back and bigger than ever, with a whole day added to the event at no extra cost, making it a five day-long metal marvel for those with weekend tickets. This year’s line-up features Kreator, Skindred, Dimmu Borgir, Saxon, Devin Townsend, Napalm Death and Judas Priest, who are celebrating 50 years of heavy metal with their headline set.
When: 28 - 29 August 2021
Where: Manchester’s Gay Village
Get on your dancing shoes: before you even see the line-up of this year’s Manchester Pride Live, you already know it’s going to be the most fun weekend you can imagine. This year, the live music line-up which compliments Manchester Pride Festival will feature high-energy pop sets from Sigala, Example, Zara Larsson, Annie Mac, Gabrielle, Eve, Sophie Ellis-Bextor, and more - with a top secret headliner to be revealed.
When: 27 - 29 August 2021
Where: Alex James’ Farm, The Cotswolds
Fancy a festival with a gourmet menu greater than cheesy chips and a tent-prepared Pot Noodle? Then The Big Feastival is the music destination you’ve been waiting for. This year marks the 10th anniversary of the combination of awesome music, food and family fun. On the mega music line-up are Sigala, Niles Rogers And Chic, Rag N Bone Man, Tom Grennan, Zara Larsson, Ella Eyre, and All Saints to name just a few, while Professor Green and Gizzi Erksine's 'Giz N Greens', Matt Tebbutt and River Cottage's Steven Lamb will take to the culinary stage. In between sets, you’ll be able to feast on the award-winning street food on offer from world-class chefs. Oh, it’s also hosted by Blur’s Alex James, so naturally there’s a Cheese Hub on site, too.
When: 5-29 August 2021
Where: Crystal Palace Bowl, London
While South London’s historic Crystal Palace Bowl amphitheatre has lain dormant for a decade, this year sees it restored to its full icon-status venue glory with an innovative new ‘floating’ stage on the lake and a brand new, month-long series of twelve outdoor concerts. The lineup boasts a diverse range of acts from Dizzee Rascal and The Outlook Orchestra, to Supergrass, The Streets, The English National Opera, and more to be announced.
When: 23 - 25 July 2021
Where: Hafod-Y-Dafal Farm, Ebbw Vale
The hills are alive… with the sound of rock! This Welsh classic rock festival has an excellent line up, but all you really need to know is that The Darkness are headlining, and they’re arguably the greatest festival band ever. What, you want more? Well, you’re in luck: The Final Countdown rockers Europe are headlining the following night, with The Wildhearts, Those Damn Crows and many more acts rounding out the three-day bill. The festival, grown out of a rock club and now a rock extravaganza atop a literal mountain, offers a choice of adult-only and family campsites, as well as a top selection of nearby holiday cottages and hotels.
When: 27 - 31 May 2021
Where: Gisburne Park Estate, Lancashire
Want to return to festivals but don’t fancy the crowds? Gisburne Park, the UK's first socially-distanced festival, promises an eclectic schedule of entertainment, from family shows and Mamma Mia Live, to world-class DJs Eats Everything and Melé, to the Symphonic Ibiza live orchestra. Last year, the festival opened for the first time, offering individual, socially-distanced pitches bookable for bubbles of six people. Every plot comes complete with deckchairs and table service - meaning no crowds, no queueing for drinks, and an altogether rather VIP festival experience. Keep the fancy fest going with boutique glamping options which come fully furnished and with electricity, or even stay in one of the on-site Ribblesdale Park holiday lodges, which come complete with a private hot tub.
When: 3 September 2021
Where: Brockwell Park, London
As if the return of live music wasn’t exciting enough, with it is set to come a wave of huge new outdoor festivals. Case in point: Wide Awake, a brand new, one day festival coming to Brixton, South London. Favouring the underground scene rather than the mainstream, fans of left-field indie, post punk, electronica, techno, and jazz can enjoy artists like black midi, Daniel Avery, Idles, Dream Wife, and SCALPING on the line-up - while being the perfect place to discover new favourites, too.
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