The Absolute Best Family-Friendly Festivals of 2014

Family-Friendly Festivals 2014 –


2014 promises to be a wonderful year for family-friendly festivals. Glastonbury is back in action and there are many other festivals to tempt you, across the length and breadth of Britain. See our festivals with kids tips page for expert advice on making the most of them as a family.


Wood Festival, Braziers Park, Oxfordshire, 16th – 18th May 2014

A much loved, family-friendly, environmentally sound, small festival at the start of the season to get you in the mood. It bills itself as a family festival offering all manner of fun activities and events for the whole family – making musical instruments from vegetables anyone? There are all sorts of holistic workshops and den building, wood lathing, puppet show fun. When the kids have finally gone to bed covered in face-paint and smiles then its time for a bit of dancing to acts like Stornoway and DJ Badger


Bearded Theory, Catton Hall, South Derbyshire, 22nd- 25th May, 2014

This award-winning small festival is one of the first festivals in the calendar and a great way to start the festival season. Its built a devoted crowd who come for the great acts it attracts – this year UB40, The Stranglers, Wilko Johnson and Carter USM plus many other brilliant bands, as well as some excellent children’s events. It’s a bit of a bargain and enormous fun.


Wychwood, Cheltenham Racecourse, 30th May – 1st June 2014

The multi-award winning Wychwood is a wonderful way to introduce your children to the pleasures of festival going. It’s booked some great bands this year including: The Boomtown Rats, The Levellers, The Stranglers, but it also has a very strong alternative line-up of speakers, comedians and children’s entertainers. Justin Fletcher will make the little ones very happy, as will the Roald Dahl Museum, children’s literary festival and a score of fantastic arts events.


Cornbury Festival, Oxfordshire, 4-6th July, 2014

Known, somewhat unfairly, as ‘poshstock’, this marvellous festival is a gentle affair in stunning surroundings. The line-up should suit all the family – teenagers of a pop-inclination should be happy dancing to Nina Nesbitt or The Feeling, while their dads get to don their Hawaiian shirt for Kid Creole and the Coconuts. Also playing are Simple Minds, Sophie Ellis-Baxtor, Hudson Taylor and many more. The vast kids’ area offers the chance to learn circus skills, how to make bunnies appear out of hats andhow to build dream-drums. This year has an international flavour, so expect lots of Bhangra Dancing and Tales from around the World.


Larmer Tree Festival, Salisbury, Wiltshire, 16th-20th July 2014

The happy festival! This perennial family favourite hosts performances from Tom Jones and Tom Odell – with Frank Turner, Stornoway and We Were Evergreen along with an incredibly varied line-up. There are also first-class comedy acts including the Kids Comedy Club, theatre performances, poetry and workshops and Mark Kermode’s Film Tent. There’s a youth zone for 11-17’s as well as a kids’ zone for the smaller kids with activities led by wonderful Farmer Jason.


3 Wishes Faery Festival, Torpoint, Cornwall, 20-22nd July 2014

If you have any fairy-mad children in the family, or indeed if your idea of a perfect weekend is to put on a tutu and wave a wand, then this is the festival for you. Be part of a record-breaking attempt to have the most fairies together in one setting or rent a gypsy caravan and enjoy an excellent line-up including Professor Elemental and 3 Daft Monkeys.


Chilled in a Field, Bentley Wildfowl and Motor Museum, East Sussex, 1st-3rd August, 2014

A charming, award-winning small festival, Chilled in a Field does pretty much what it says on the tin. A festival for those who enjoy dancing in gumboots round a field to Bluegrass or hanging out in a tipi with your kids sewing flowers. One of the Guardian’s Top 25 festivals.


Camp Bestival, Dorset, 31st July – 3rd August 2014

This enormously popular family festival has something for all ages. The impressive line-up this year includes James, Basement Jaxx, De La Soul, Courtney Pine and a wide range of other artists. The kids have just as many treats in store and will be royally entertained by the varied likes of Mr Tumble, The Big Top, Horrible Histories, the Insect Theatre and a free extreme-sports park for teenagers. Rob da Bank’s Music Club in the Magic Meadow is just for the older kids. A wide range of glamping options are available.


Wilderness Festival, Cotswolds, 7th–10th August 2014 

This family-friendly festival always impresses with its fab line-up, eccentric and creative art happenings and emphasis on good food. This year’s artist’s includes Sam Smith, Jessie Ware, London Grammar and a whole host of excellent and varied acts.. You can feast with top chefs Angela Hartnett, Simon Rogan, Mark Hix and Russell Norman or book a place in the Moro souk tent. You can go swimming in the lake or relax in the spa, go on late night revelries or play billiards at the Village Tent. The kids will have just as much fun, choosing between StorySock, Hullabaloo Theatre and Angel Gardens and much else beside. The glamping is truly out of this world.. See our feature on the Wilderness Festival with Kids, including a bushcraft camp.


Lakefest, Croft Farm WaterPark, Gloucestershire, 8th – 10th August

Fabulous fun for families, Lakefest ticks all the boxes when it comes to family-friendly festivals – its situated in stunning landscape with lots of water features for kids to play in. The line up is very strong to keep parents and older kids happy, including: The Lightening Seeds, The Buzzcocks, Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, Shed Seven and there are some wonderful, mad things for the kids to get up to, Dragon Theatre, drumming, circus skills – highly recommended.


Green Man Festival, Brecon Beacons, 14th – 17th August 2014

One of the most environmentally-friendly festivals around and also one with some of the best live acts. There is some fabulous music, great speakers, interesting comics and some brilliant children’s events all set in the stunning surroundings of the Black Mountains. This is one of those festivals which from humble roots has grown to be a fixture on the festival circuit and one of the absolute best.



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