Dear Mummy, it’s all gone a bit Pete Tong at Southampton’s Common People but in a good way. As Pete Tong and his orchestra took over our local music festival with a nostalgic flick through classic Ibiza offerings as Saturday headliners. I’m sure festival goers were mistaken for thinking they were at Pacha but in fact Pete Tong was playing for a much larger crowd a bit closer to home. Along with a DJ set from Faithless, music from Becky Hill and Tom Odell, Saturday night sure had a better line up than the Sunday in my Daddy’s eyes.
Common People 2017 was held at Southampton Common, a large expanse of green belt which had welcomed in thousands of festival goers to enjoy a two-day event over the last May Bank holiday weekend without camping. My daddy and I were roving reporters on the Sunday as my mummy was laid up in hospital with another collapsed lung.
This year two entrances made it easier to access the festival. Less queues and quicker bag searches allow us to spend more time inside. The festival was brimming with things to do and bands to see. After the atrocity of the Manchester terror attack security was rammed up with an armed officers and show security presence to reassure the public.
The knock-on effect of this was that the festival seemed a little subdued on the Sunday, but this could have been due to many folks nursing heavy hangovers from the night before. Saturday festival goers had enjoyed barmy weather and sunshine late into the evening, however when we arrived on the Sunday it was a bit gloomy with rain clouds threatening.
My daddy and I weren’t going to let a little bit of rain stop play though and headed to the Kids Area before the heavens opened. A nice little spot where my mummy would have perched had she’d been with us would be under the trees sandwiched in between the Kids Area and the Jam Jar Bar. It’s a perfect spot to watching the world go by. Common People can be as crazy or as laid back as you want it to be.
I’ve always been a massive fan of what festivals put on for kids and Common People is no exception. Being the spin-off from Camp Bestival and Bestival we wouldn’t expect any less than a fantastic area for families to relax and play.
We weren’t disappointed and enjoyed practicing circus tricks, taking tips from the performers. Hula hopping, blowing giant bubbles it felt like I had joined the Circus. I sat in the big tent during a rain shower and was mesmerised by the show.
Afterwards it was lunchtime and still early so the site appeared quite empty at this stage. We didn’t have to queue for food around the street food vendors vans and had our pick of some yummy culinary delights from fresh noodles, big fat hot dogs to delicious veggie options. Staff were friendly and festival goers were in a happy mood.
We sat in the main field and waited for the music to start on the main Common Stage. It was actually a nice setting for a picnic and I had fun prancing around pretended it was my own music concert. We missed the fun of Mr Motivator this year and it needed an act to perk the crowd up. Afterwards we braved the helter skelter and the big wheel which gave us an amazing view of the festival site in all its glory.
For the rest of the day we meandered through the crowds, soaking in the atmosphere of dub-step and reggae. Common People is definitely the festival that sits inbetween Camp Bestival and Bestival and is mainly aged at teens and young adults as that was the core audience. They need to do a bit more in the Kids Area to make it truly a family festival though, as the cut back to the crafting areas and teens wandering in an out of the toddler areas using Circus equipment was off-putting. As we left the festival in the early evening hoards of people were entering the site for the evening shenanigans to see Groove Amanda and Sean Paul.
Feet soaked but with smiles on our faces we headed home. It just goes to show that you can have fun at a festival in the rain, even after a storm of a show the previous night.
Here’s our snapshot of the festival condensed into under 2 minutes for your viewing pleasure 😉
Love Bella x
Disclaimer: We were offered family tickets to Common People Southampton in order to write our review. All pictures and thoughts are our own.