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Edith Bowman shares her pro tips, from finding your tent to a four-day hair ’do
“I’ve spent half my life going to festivals – first as a music fan, then through my work as a DJ and as the wife of a musician. As a 19-year-old radio intern, my job was to do things like interview Kylie by the Portaloos! But now, my priority is to make sure the kids enjoy it as much as I do. It’s not just about the music – it’s about a shared experience with friends and family. I have so much love for the Great British Festival, I’ve even written a book!* Here are some of the things I’ve learnt along the way…
And make sure you wear two pairs of knee-high socks underneath, to reduce friction and rubbing. Wellies aren’t your only option, either – I’ve got a pair of hardy biker boots that are my go-to festival footwear. The stories they could tell…
You don’t have to be in the scrum at the front to experience the music. Get a rug, sit at the back of the crowd and crack out the toys. You can watch Florence while the kids build a ship – everyone’s a winner!
Because a) they’ll love it and b) you won’t lose them. One year, I made my son Spike a cape that had his name in glitter on the back – it was easy to spot him in the crowd! Write your phone number on their arm in marker pen as an extra precaution.
STAND OUT IN THE CROWD
Pack Sleek MakeUp i-Divine Eyeshadow Palette in Ultra Matte 1, £7.99/799 points, to rock the brightest look in the crowdCurrently Unavailable
Barry M Glitter Rush Glitter in Snow Globe, £4.59/459 points, for a festi-glam face and bodyCurrently Unavailable
Urgh! Instead, take thin, easy-drying clothes (such as cotton cardies and tights), so you can layer up to get warm, then de-layer to dry off. For the kids, get all-in-one waterproofs. They can even doodle on them in pen, which they’ll love.
Go to Google Maps on your smartphone, and just drop a pin where your tent is – then you’ll easily find it later. You can also make sure your tent stands out from the crowd by buying a brightly coloured design, and putting up a flag. Don’t rush to be the first to pitch your tent, though; you can spot eager beavers, as they’re always too near the main stage and will get seriously squashed. Wait and watch, and you’ll figure out the best place for you…”
Health & Beauty headliners
Keep a bottle of sunscreen with you (and reapply, reapply, reapply!): Soltan Protect & Moisturise Suncare Spray SPF30 Boots Exclusive £5/500 points (200ml)Add
Avoid the queues for showers with an essential such as Batiste Dry Shampoo in Marrakech Boots Exclusive £3.29/329 points (200ml)Currently Unavailable
This sturdy camera will survive mud baths and downpours: Olympus Tough TG4 in Red Boots.com onlyOnline only
Planning on raving, not behaving? New Festival Kit, £13/1,300 points, includes plasters, hair chalk and flushable toilet seat covers – genius!Currently Unavailable
Clarins Moisture Replenishing Lip Balm SPF15, £19.50/1,950 points (15ml), protects from UV and soothes dry patchesAdd
*Edith Bowman’s Great British Music Festivals (Blink Publishing, £16.99) is available now
Interview Charlotte Grant-West Photography Getty Images, Pixeleyes, Press Association Images, Rex Features