Limetree 2011 Review

Limetree Festival, Yorkshire, 26th – 28th August 2011

Our competition winners for Limetree Festival tickets were Mike, his wife Gaelle and their 2 daughters (aged 5 and 9).  Now Mike, as it turns out, was a music journalist in a past life so we asked him to share how they got on… (the photos are from Mike’s phone as they lost their camera)

Arriving, setting up camp and site layout

“We arrived on the Saturday after cowarding out of a 3 hour drive in weather of biblical proportions on the Friday (not wanting to put the tent up in a lake & lightning).  The site was tricky to find, but beautifully secluded. On the way in I was fearing a lack of space in the family fields would force us to pitch up in the crowded main field but when we decamped from the car park, a very short walk into the family field put us at rest. The family field was bijou with no facilities but at least we had a spot and we quickly setup and got into the fray.

I was so glad we weren’t in the main field as it was fit to bursting, and walking through to the main arena was an A to Z of discarded booze, Friday had clearly been a heavy night 🙂

The Dance tents were clustered around the top of the main campsite and gave campers a steady soundtrack to the weekend, lots of choice over the various dance tents, and a deep house ice cream van (minus the ice creams, much to the kids dismay!).

The main arena is compact and immediately made us relax, there would be little chance of the kids getting lost, and lots of space to play and enjoy the music. There were lots of stalls offering a wide variety of foods at reasonable prices.”

What is lovely about the site is that each field is compact and easy to get from one field to another with little hassle.  The stone circle and ponds provided a lovely refuge from the noise and mud (the circle was magically unsullied by the mud which riddled the rest of the site).”

The music

“With the exception of two or three names, all of the music was unknowns (to us), and unsigned which made waiting around for the next band a bit like Christmas, full of anticipation. If they weren’t to your taste, off you wander to a different tent. The girls loved the rock and funk elements (there is a high quota of funk and soul here, which offsets the trance, techno and reggae beautifully). There were lots of interesting guitar bands, and the chance to see some of the artists intimately in the Acoustic Stage. Highlights for us were Portishead DJ Andy Smith (playing surf rock, rockabilly and northern soul classics) and the brilliant Voices of the Day choir: their version of Basement Jaxx ‘Do your thing’ had us singing all day.”

The activities

“The weather put paid to most of the activities for kids.  There were a few tents with indoor activities, but they were crowded and this put us off. That said, the kids loved Captain Carrot‘s show.  The people from Butterfingers were lovely and very friendly, they really encouraged the kids to get involved (the music workshops were great). It was a shame that there seemed to be little structure to the events, so it was easy to keep missing activities. There was nothing in the evening for the kids, and this is something they should consider for 2012. The Butterfingers team had recognised this, so hopefully it will be better for next year.

Community spirit

“Everyone we met or talked to over the weekend was very friendly, and this is the main aim of Limetree, a bijou festival which puts a community spirit back into festivalling. We saw the festival organisers (husband and wife team, Sean & Karen Birdsall) all over the site, and it was good to know they were so intimately integrated into the event.”

The verdict?

“This was the first time we had taken our girls camping and it was also their first overnight at a festival.  The weather was typical British Bank Holiday downpours. It should have been a disaster, but we all loved it and are planning our festival action for next year already!

Thank you to Romany at Festival Kidz for giving us the chance to get to a festival this year.  The kids loved it!”

For more information on the Limetree Festival, visit the festival website on or see our Limetree Festival Factsheet for families.

If you have been to Limetree or any other festival with your children please share your experiences with us for the benefit of other parents trying to find the right festival for their family.  We have a simple online form here to make it easy for you.

3 thoughts on “Limetree 2011 Review

  1. such a great festival all the way up in North Yorks. So funky. highlight has to be Kava Kava who must be the best band on the planet. Blimey.

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