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17,000 festival-goers flock to West Midlands's first ever Camp Bestival

The sun is out, spirits are high and crowds are turning out in full force for the first-ever Camp Bestival held in the West Midlands.

Becky Hill performs at Camp Bestival this weekend
Becky Hill performs at Camp Bestival this weekend

A total of 17,000 festival goers have flocked from across the country to Weston Park on the Shropshire/Staffordshire border this weekend, as Camp Bestival arrives in the Midlands for the first time.

Friday magic at Camp Bestival

The festival, which has attracted families all the way from Scotland and Wales, is a sister event to the sell-out event in Dorset which has been running for the last 14 years.

With a star-studded line-up including Bewdley-born Becky Hill, The Proclaimers, Fatboy Slim, Example and Rag 'N' Bone Man, festival goers have flocked to the music stage this weekend.

Photo by Garry Jones

Rob Da Bank, Camp Bestival's organiser, said: "It's amazing. It's Saturday morning here and I have just done the Silent Disco where the crowd has been jumping up and down – and that sums up the weekend.

"It's perfect festival weather and there's a great crowd. After a couple of days people are finding their way around the site and exploring it all.

"On Friday night we had Becky Hill and she absolutely smashed it and The Proclaimers had a massive crowd.

"Everyone is busy from the time they wake up to the time they go to bed."

Becky Hill performs at Camp Bestival this weekend
Photo by Garry Jones

There is something for everyone at this year's Camp Bestival, with family-fun events which include axe-throwing, wood craft, paddle boarding, inflatables, art, yoga and circus performers.

Other notable names on the line-up include Mr Motivator, Horrible Histories: Terrible Tudors, Jodie Harsh, Self-Esteem, Gok Wan, Sara Cox and Faithless.

Following a secret set by Jodie Harsh on Friday, the surprises continued on Barclaycard’s Amp stage on Saturday, as Gok Wan brought his soulful mixes to the stage for a 90s rave.

Sgt Helen Ceresa from Staffordshire Police at Bestival. Pic by Sarah Derry.

Gok said: “Bestival is one of my favourite festivals because it is so family orientated, but when you go on-site you have the best food, the best atmosphere, there’s loads going on plus there’s something for every generation.

"Kids can enjoy it as much as adults.”

Commenting on her set on Friday, DJ Jodie Harsh said: “What a major day at Camp Bestival. It was so fun to get the party started with Barclaycard on the Amp stage – it was a moment to have a more intimate party with people of all ages, and there were so many ravers there with their kids.

"Later I headlined the Big Top, which was a different experience and very fun, late into the night!”

Gok Wan at Camp Bestival Photo by Alex Laurel
Jodie Harsh at Camp Bestival this weekend Photo by Alex Laurel

The Dorset event has been run by former Radio 1 DJ Rob da Bank and his wife Josie since 2008.

"We've run Camp Bestival in Dorset for 14 years and have an amazing, loyal, sold-out crowd," Rob added, "so we thought 'why don't we do one in the Midlands?'

"I've spent a good week driving around Shropshire admiring the history and heritage and we will keep building on the festival here."

Weston Park has 1,000 acres of green spaces which includes lawns, parkland and woodland areas that people can explore and makes a 'beautiful site' for a festival.

Photo by Garry Jones

Becks Clarke, marketing at Camp Bestival, said: "It's been amazing. It's the most beautiful site. It's been phenomenal for a first year and we've been lucky with the weather.

"We've had so much support over the weekend. It's so nice to be in the West Midlands and so lovely to see families enjoying themselves especially after the last two years."

Welcome to Camp Bestival

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