Harvest at Jimmy’s 2011 Review

2011 HAJ Weather: Windy and a few showers (but plenty of shelter so not a problem)

Review by: Danielle (with a 3yr old and a 5mth old baby)

Getting to the festival:

We arrived just after 1pm and the car parking was easy and quiet. We loaded the buggy with stuff and went to wait in the queue. The gates where supposed to open at 3pm but didn’t open until gone 3.30 ( maybe even 3.45 ) so we had one very fed up 3 year old!
We had a good choice of where to camp and chose the family area. We where all pretty spaced out and the families around us were fantastic: all really friendly and kind enough to give us some gas when ours ran out and the shop said they wouldn’t be getting any more!!! All the people round us had children a similar age so it wasn’t noisy and the children slept well.

Entertainment – Line up and Kids Activities:

We loved the line up. The only thing we would say was there was not enough time to do everything!! We all had our faces painted by facenations who where fantastic! We loved the different chefs and the porridge lady! We watched Stefan Gates and my partner met him after and had a quick chat!

We also went to see The Gruffalo which was brilliant although we had to queue for quite along time to see it as the first time we went we didn’t get in as it was so busy. I also enjoyed baby yoga with my 5 month old and toddler yoga with my 3 year old.

Our absolute favourite of the weekend was Mr Tumble and we waited at the front to see him quite early on but he was well worth the wait. We didn’t get his autograph as the queue was huge!

We also spotted a few celebs wandering around, our favourite spot was Jamie and Jools Oliver and their lovely little ones.
Of course it has to be said the food was amazing and Jimmy’s hog roast was yummy! I am still full up from the amount I ate!

What would you change or do to  improve the event?

A shop that stocked camping gas! We ran out and where a bit annoyed to find they weren’t thinking of getting any more in. Useless when we needed hot water for baby bottles.

No clover stage!!!!!! It was very annoying when you were trying to watch good chefs on The Farmhouse Kitchen stage with the very loud “Can you have it, yes you can” being sung loudly every 5 mins!

What are your top tips?

We took our 5 month old baby and she really did just go with the flow and enjoy looking at everything going on around her. I would say these where a must for us:
Ear defenders – We put them on our baby in the evening and put the rain cover on the pram which meant we could stay and watch the music later on without worrying about it disturbing her too much.
Extra camping gas! – We ran out and the shop wasn’t getting any more in they said.
Cold water steriliser – for keeping those bottles clean.
A buggy for the older children – Our 3 year old has only just grown out of sleeping in the day and so she was shattered after late nights and busy days . We could have done with taking a buggy for her to snooze in whilst we watched the Farmhouse Kitchen stage. Thankfully it was dry so she slept on a blanket on the floor!
Lots of water proofs, just in case! We didn’t really need them but did put them on in the evening when it cooled down. It just helped to keep us warm.

Site and Facilities:

We were very impressed with the team keeping on top of the toilets! They where always stocked with loo roll and had people regularly come and clean them. They weren’t so smelly either. The showers where also kept clean and although the showers i had where lovely and warm there where a few people say they kept getting cold.
The ground was bumpy but we managed to use the buggy fairly easily and took our sling as well. There where places you couldn’t access with the buggy like the woods but mainly we got on ok with using it. All the guy ropes in the camping area did make it interesting trying to get in and out of the camping area with the buggy although there was a path round the edge of the camping area which made things easy. There was a few tents for baby changing too and the food places where more than happy to give us hot water for our babies bottle. All the people working there where so friendly too.

Did you feel safe?

Yes we felt safe – the whole festival had a really friendly, fun atmosphere. We didn’t feel it was too crowded and we occasionally saw the police wandering round but never saw any trouble.

The tip of writing your number on your child’s wrist band was a good one and felt she would have been well looked after if she had of got lost.

Would you go again?

Absolutely, already counting down to the next one!

10/10

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Review by: Anonymous (with two 12 year olds)

Getting to the festival:

We had about 3/4hr wait to get in because of delay in opening gate.  It wasn’t too far to camping site.   The other campers helped each other and were lovely.

It would have been nice to have affordable set up tents. The boutique camping was way too pricey.   The site was very over light, and very noisy – the generators were very loud and music from disco went on to 3am and had a very heavy bass.  As it was a family festival that wasn’t good. Some children woke at 5.30am so I wasn’t a happy camper.  I will never ever camp at Harvest at Jimmy‘s again!

Entertainment – Line up and Kids Activities:

The Cambridge Circus people were fantastic, animals in the farm area lovely (although the ferrets were a little underfed) There is a young man with animals who was fantastic and it was clear he is devoted to the animals and really interacted well with children and adults alike.  The food was fantastic and well priced.  The acts were good and diverse.

What would you change or do to  improve the event?

More working showers, more drinking water points a few more activities for older children.

What are your top tips?

Be minimal with your camping gear and don’t bother taking food there’s plenty of lovely stuff there.

Take earplugs and don’t let your child scream and shout at 5.30am  if they don’t calm down take them for a nice walk.  Some people like to sleep past 7.30.  That way your neighbours will be even nicer.

Go and see the animals they are really lovely.

Site and Facilities:

Toilets were great.  Showers were a joke, cold or not working and only found six that’s no way enough.  No way near enough drinking water points either and they were difficult to find.

Mobile phone coverage was good.

Did you feel safe?

Very very safe. At no time did I feel feel intimidated by crowds.  It was a lovely place for children.  The security was a little laid back but I didn’t see any problems.  It was lovely to see police at the festival.  Overall the festival had a great relaxed atmosphere

Would you go again?

Yes, but only for a day.

4/10

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