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It's less of a warning Cal n Del, more of an aspiration ;-)
So - camping - what do you want to know?
Loads of things, need to talk it through more. Not such an online person. Its like what camoing option would best suit me, bring on or the paid for options on the site...where as single to pitch, what its like there etc. Just a general discussion, try to remember before you went on your first festival...
Ok first off, what camping kit do you have?
Unless you are loaded the glamping options are out.
The ground is generally flat and well drained - except in heavy weather as of recent weeks so be prepared for mud.
You need to get to Charlton Park as early as possible - thursday at 9 am gives you a good chance of getting a good pitch - the later you leave it the more crowded it gets and by friday you will be taking what space is left.
Get to know your neighbours and don't be afraid to ask for help - festie people are usually very friendly.
Make sure your tent is decent - not a festie cheapie. I noticed that Blacks are having a tent sale and there is a good Vango tent for sale at £85 - 3 man with a porch. You need this size tent as a minimun even if you are on your own. This will ensure you stay dry a warm. A good sleeping bag is also a must. If the heavens open a tent with porch will mean you have somewhere to stow wet stuff - don't take it into the tent. If you do buy a new tent - pitch it before you go and apply some seam sealer.
Travel light. Don't take too much stuff - you are only going for four days tops.
Waterproofs (even if its promising a heatwave)
bum bag for money and anything of value ( never leave anything of value in your tent and stick it in the ottom of yur sleeping bag at night)
a friendly and warm personality!!
The rest is up to you!!
As Redleg says, even camping virgins (let alone Festie ones) will always find friends at WOMAD.
If you want a relatively quiet night's camping, aim for the Family field area. The area near the car parking entrance is generally flat and the grass is short (none of that "Ooh" It's all drippy on me leg" stuff). Try and pitch your tent before you go - just to get the hang of it.
There's plenty to eat n drink at the festie, so that's something you can leave behind (if you're not on a restrictive budget)
Don't pitch too near the loos - even in the best of years, that ain't a good option.
Also, you could check the Get Togehter Thread on here and maybe bimble along to one of those sessions, again to find friends or guides.
Start at the info tent - they know what they're doing and they wanna help. The rest of us are pretty experienced WOMADers n all, so you should be able to get a bit of knowlhow, one way or the other.
More later...must away now
A reply from another perspective. We don't have any camping gear and have never bought any as neither of us have camped before or would use it at any other time. We therefore hire a a basic 2 man tent via womad camping. It does cost a bit more but at our advanced ages (!) we are happy not to have to put up a tent and blow up an airbed - we can just dump our stuff and head into the arena. The area is also fairly secure with security at the entrance (tho we would still never leave anything of value in the tent) and close to car park and arena. You also have good showers, loos and space between the tents. We like it, but it is a more expensive option. It is pretty quiet too so if you are wanting somewhere young and lively then it wouldn't suit you. It really does depend what you are looking for and what you budget is (lively - go to the festival campind area near Mollys bar; quiet, camp in the family area) Get there early (ie first thing thursday for the best spots) Be friendly, get to know the people in the neighbouring tents for advice and watching out for each other.. Baz and Redleg have pretty much said it all if you are going to bring your own tent - excellent advice from both of them.
There's loadsofplaces to camp. No matter when you get there there's always a space. Lots of nice people like me who offer tea and black pudding around. You might be unlucky to camp near littering untidy thoughtless sorts or some territorial types who never speak. We always take a stove for brewing up, a small 3 legged stool, pillow, torch maybe, refreshments!, usual camping junk. Nothing valuable. Optimism is a good thing. Enjoy, stop up late, eat, drink, do as ye would be done by.
"Unless you are loaded the glamping options are out".
I don't really agree with this if you've not already got a tent, have never put one up before and/or don't want to arrive particularly early (or it's hoying it down!).
Here's an offer (not from me - much to the annoyance of all the ascetics round here, I'll be in a B&B due to my extreme age and aversion to queuing for a shower in t'morning )
B&B is an option but I suspect that'd be all booked out by now (not that I'd know - I'm an ardent canvas hotelier meself.
I'm also good with tea but not black pudding. I can do tea pudding, though - 3 bags leave to steep for half an hour - don't stir - makes marvellous bedrock for tent pegs.
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