Valley Fest is bringing top tunes, great headliners, Michelin-starred food, relaxing treatments and workshops, plus much more to Chew Valley Lake from 2-4 August 2019
Valley Fest, the best-tasting music festival in the South West, has a punchy programme this year with Basement Jaxx (DJ set), Razorlight and Tom Odell headlining. The music festival, which takes place between 2-4 August 2019 alongside Chew Valley Lake, also showcases the region’s finest produce. From charcuterie to cheddars and ciders to sausages, it’s hedge-to-hedge Somerset style and sizzle.
Now in its fifth year, Valley Fest’s line up has always included some big names as well as plenty of rising stars. And the consistently biggest crowd pleaser of all: the view. The lake provides the sparkling backdrop that is edged by the rolling Mendip hills.
Live acts and DJ sets
This year Nubiyan Twist, Stealing Sheep, Henge, Dutty Moonshine Big Band, The Magic Numbers and Honeyfeet are on the bill. Valley Fest has got a much bigger DJ line up this year with Norman Jay MBE serving up some good times. There will also be a DJ set from Leftfield plus The Nextmen are playing too.
Lazy lakeside lushness
The consistently biggest crowd pleaser of all: the view. Part of Valley Fest’s appeal is the lazy lakeside vibe and the artists which perfectly cater to that include Ishmael Ensemble and Three Cane Whale, whose debut album was chosen by Cerys Matthews as one of her Top Five Modern Folk Albums.
Food glorious food
The region’s culinary heroes and heroines will be cooking up a storm day and night in the form of feasts. Owner of the Michelin-starred Pony and Trap, Josh Eggleton, together with Rob Howell, head chef of Root in Wapping Wharf, which recently won a Bib Gourmand award, are at the helm on Saturday. They are serving a six-course feast during the afternoon and evening. On Sunday, the Free Range Chef will be serving up three courses of vegetarian sharing platters – expect a fusion of flavours from the Middle East and Italy. Not forgetting the gorgeous boozy brunches, which will be offered by the Riverford Field Kitchen on Saturday and the Yeo Valley Canteen on Sunday.
Valley Fest is about celebrating food in the South West and the passion of those who produce it. Most of the fresh ingredients will be coming from the festival’s neighbours at The Community Farm. The meat will be sourced from Luke’s farm (the land on which the festival takes place) or Combe Farm, which is just down the road. In short you don’t get much more local than that.
Regionally-sourced tapas will be served all day in the iconic tipis by The Monmouth Table, run by Annie Coplestone and Carlotta Paolieri. Annie has worked for Moro, River Cottage and River Café. The Artisan Market will be stuffed with goodies. There will be cooking demonstrations from Masterchef quarter finalist Hope Pointing, and Elly Pear will be cooking recipes from her brand new book Green. Huge BBQs are scheduled too – think tractor-sized rotisseries.
A variety of talks are schedule, as well as workshops on pickling, foraging and gardening are planned. Plus there will more street food than you can shake a stick at. In short, there’s something to tickle everyone’s taste buds. You won’t be going hungry, that’s for sure.
Weleda will be offering Skin Food facials. Yoga, massage, meditation, mindfulness, reiki and singing workshops are available to help rejuvenate and refresh. Plus talks on body confidence.
Much of the drive to run the festival comes from the fund raising opportunity it creates. Last year, Valley Fest raised £14,479.15 for Teenage Cancer Trust. The festival’s founder, Luke, lost his mother, Sandra Hasell, to ovarian cancer. She had so much energy and a huge love of life – just like Luke. That is why Valley Fest wants to support teenagers through a cancer diagnosis, so that they have the best chance of thriving and also loving life. The money raised will help to ensure that young people in the South West don’t have to face cancer alone.
Luke says: “We were so proud of our fundraising efforts last year and have got some cracking ideas for this year. Plus I’m so excited about our line up! Basement Jaxx are going to get the weekend off to a flying start. Razorlight are going to bring the rock’n’ roll and Tom Odell’s showmanship is something to behold, my parents would have loved it.”
And the best bit?! Adult weekend tickets are £125 (plus booking fee) and can be bought online. They are selling out in record time, so join the party while you can.
The event is perfect for food lovers, first-time festival goers, plus young and maturing families. No long treks across site and plenty of activities for everyone. Expect hedge-to-hedge Somerset sparkle and plenty of nonsense with a spectacular soundtrack. This is West Country wildness at its best. Everyone is advised to arrive hungry.
Main image: The view from Chew Valley Lake is enough to bring in a crowd at Valley Fest. Credit: Louis Smith