Its the Good Life Experience on September , 14th, 15th & 16th at Hawarden Estate, Flintshire –

An hours drive from Manchester and Liverpool and bus away from Chester  It’s my favourite festival.


People – Dead sound, peaceful… the sort of people who say “hello” when you’re out walking. Ok there’s a few Tarquins and Ptolemnys in the gin tent, but they’re peace loving people.

Line up.  Well, I’m on the main stage with the Cassia String Quartet on the Sunday at 2.45 but i’m most excited about seeing Darren Hayman doing his amazing “thankful villages stuff” but there’s loads more with Gwenno, Arun Ghosh and his band, Norman Jay and loas of other cool DJ’s . but what i love about goodlife is that you can be stumbling round and suddenly you’ll be drawn to a tent by a sound and when you get there, there’s 20 moroccan drummers making the most beautiful sound you’ve ever heard.

When your festival is curated by the amazing Cerys Mathews and Steve Abbot along with their friends and Hosts the wonderful Gladstones, your likely to get some amazing music.

There’s also loads of great talks – I Sunday morning stumbled into a tent last year and had my hangover cured by an incredible guy talking about the decline of the hare population in the UK. nO, honestly, it was brilliant. that’s the thing, if you get people who are passionate about their subject, they’re great to listen to.

and there’s “Caught by the River” as well – poets like will burns and discussions with Jeff Town and a whole heap of stuff that makes you wish you read more books.

Food – the centre of the festival is the Farmshop. Ok, i can hear the bells ringing but it’s cheaper than the burger stall at the shit festivals but the food is all grown in the Hawarden estate, so, it’s fresh from the fields.  Food is central to the festival – Goodlife! Get it?  there’s more chefs than you can shake a ladle at – all top notch – all doing demos. If youre into the cuisine – it’s the place to be.

I love throwing knives an axes at people – but it’s Illegal – but at Goodlife you can throw them at targets and pretend they are people you dislike. There’s bow and arrow there and it’s a great opportunity to bring out the hunter gatherer in yourself and not get arrested for murder.

Fun Fair – I hate Fairs – They’re neither fun nor fair – Full of chungy men with unwashed Jeans and lots of keys pretending to be david essex.  But at goodlife, it’s different.  Firstly, it’s free.  that means no grubby guys hanging off the edge of your waltzer, palms outstretched. Secondly, it’s vintage old school victorian – it’s beautiful to simply look at cos thats what i had to do cos they would let me on anything cos i was too big.

Mobile Library – I’m a librarian – worked for many years in manchester.  That’s why i love Jeff Towns – he bought a mobile library from an auction to store all his books in – his Mrs hit the roof cos it didn’t even fit on the drive, so now jeff drives it around festivals and events up and down the UK sharing his beautiful Bus, books and booze.  He aint in it for the money, he must lose thousands the amount of books i see him giving away to kids. and there’s a whole fringe thing going on the bus with Impromptu readings and absinthe consumption.

Location – your in a beautiful estate – fields of green go on for miles – no mad fences and gates or meat head security bullying you about – See people section above

Price – I’m very tight.  I don’t really like paying money for things. neither do you if you admit to yourself.  Thats anther reason  i love the Goodlife Experience – A weekend camping ticket is £155 for an adult.  Compare that to Glastonbury, Leeds/Reading as a matter of fact, compare to all of them.  It’s the best.

an adult day ticket is £79 youth day ticket is £45 and under 12’s are free – You’s spend that on a day trip to alton towers just to throw up after going on rides that your kids bullied you into going on.


Do something different this weekend and bring the dog


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