The Cambridge Club is a relatively small family festival with a BIG heart. We arrived a little unsure on our first visit, mainly because as seasoned festival goers we had never parked our car at an airfield and then caught a bus to the festival site – but the rules at the Cambridge Club Festival meant everyone has to arrive to the site via bus. So we did. In the heat with other revellers. It is by no means a perfectly organised festival but it is perfectly chaotic and SO MUCH FUN – here’s our top five reasons to go with your kids.
Why do you go to festivals? For the music, ofcourse! The line-up on the main stage for 2022 featured world renouned acts like Diana Ross, Niles Rodgers & Chic and The Jacksons as well as well as Corine Bailey Rae, Gabirelle and Mica Paris and a variety of different DJs throughout the evening. For the kids there was a a big top tent complete with stage where you could catch Andy and the Odd Socks, Yolanda’s Band Jam and lots more music and family friendly fun (the kid particularly enjoyed the circus acts and tricks.
One of the things we most enjoy about festivals is the outdoor freedom that children get to experience. At The Cambridge Club, the Orchard is the area where the kids got the most freedom – this part of the festival is hosted (as the name suggests) inside a beautiful orchard with pear and apple trees adorned with books and bunting. The stage here is for comedy acts and there were tents for outdoor family activities, crafts, a small soft play area and a few sponsor tents (Mind Charity were giving away freebies and Hey Car, the sponsors hosted a gaming tent that the kid really enjoyed!). But the most fun was to be found in the freedom of exploring, trying out new activities (hello skateboarding and making homemade slime) as well as the independent playing and the new friends that the kid made. There’s also freedom for the parents as you can take a blanket and pop yourself down with a drink and a snack and enjoy whilst you bask in warm sunshine lazing about in the afternoon – you can hear the music and relax knowing the kids are free and happy.
yup – the food was on point. We were a bit dissapointed when reading the festival rules around bringing your own food – and no cooking stove. Half the fun of camping involves cooking some meals outsdoors (and a few marshmallows). Plus for families with more than one child – the cost of eating out for the whole weekend can get expensive (it is around £9 per portion). That being said – the food options were delicious with big portion sizes and mostly represented good value for money, even though the queues were long at main meal times! Fortunately we had a trolley with us so could hang out inside the trolley whilst waiting for our order. Top tip – go and eat outside the main mealtimes – go for brunches, super early breakfast or a drunken late dinner. Also look for promotional partnerships – the Waitrose pop-up was by far the best value – we did a run tasting (£6 per person got you around 3 drinks) and the foodie options (all vegan) were around £7.
There are A LOT of camping and glamping options available. We camped in a self-pitch tent as most of the glamping options were out of our pricepoint by the time we realised we were going to attend (the earlier you book, the cheaper the camping). We had a great time and met some other lovely families that were camping close by. I worried a little when I realised there was no family camping at the festival and on the first night some young first time revellers in their twenties got loud and drunk until 4am – fortunately they were much more chilled as the festival continued. One of my favourite things about camping at Cambrdige Club were the clean, flushable toilets and the complimentary pamper tent (complete with hairdryers, straightners, beauty products and free 5minute masssages) Absolute bliss and a mega bonus.
Party with your kids
It may not be partying like you used to – but it is still loads of fun. You can bond as a family over iconic music as you move to the tunes and dance together! Immerse yourself in the music, let the kids run around – and bring plenty of snacks and entertainment in case they do run out of stea,. We particularly loved the community feel of the event and found the experience extremely satisfying – Niles Rodgers had our heart and Diana Ross our admiration. Our phones ran out of battery and we were fully there, present and able to engage with each other – which let’s face it – is pretty rare! We took in the atmosphere and the music fully – without any distractions or limitations of normal parenthood or life. It was our first visit – but it certainly won’t be the last.