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Nick Dent-Robinson highlights some of the best music festivals of 2022.
After more than two years of lockdown and other pandemic restrictions, finally the UK music festival scene seems set to blossom again through Summer, 2022! From big-name, internationally renowned spectaculars to the smaller, bespoke events, this year's festival calendar has something for everyone.
Some highlights are:-
HAMPTON COURT PALACE FESTIVAL, Hampton Court, Surrey:-
10 - 12 June - Tickets (from £51) at hamptoncourtpalacefestival.com
Having run a small, Government-approved event last year, this boutique festival staged against the impressive backdrop of Henry VIII's Tudor home now returns to full capacity for the first time since 2019. Artists appearing will include UB40 with singer Ali Campbell, Elbow, George Benson, The Human League, Kacey Musgraves, Crowded House and Jack Savoretti.
ISLE OF WIGHT FESTIVAL, Seaclose Park, Newport, Isle of Wight:-
16 -19 June - Weekend Tickets from £211-45p at isleofwightfestival.com
Once known as “England's Woodstock” after Bob Dylan, The Who, Jimi Hendrix and The Doors appeared there in 1969/1970, the Isle of Wight event is very respectable and a family favourite these days. It has a nicely balanced bill this year with Kasabian, Muse, Griff, Mimi Webb and local favourites, the youthful Wet Leg.
GLASTONBURY, Worthy Farm, Somerset:-
22 – 26 June - Tickets Sold Out at glastonburyfestivals.co.uk
Tickets are long gone for this internationally acclaimed event – but BBC coverage will be extensive. Having missed out on its half-century anniversary in 2000, Glastonbury also failed to happen in 2021. But the jewel in the UK festival crown is finally back! Sir Paul McCartney hopes to repeat his triumphant 2004 Glastonbury appearance while Diana Ross, Robert Plant, Billie Eilish and rapper Kendrick Lamar are other headliners. Amongst many other big names appearing will be Noel Gallagher, the Pet Shop Boys, and The Damned.
BRITISH SUMMER TIME, Hyde Park, London:-
24 June – 10 July - Day Tickets from £68-05p at bst-hydepark.com
BST is now a fixture on the London music calendar and it is seen as the music festival for metropolitan folk who want to avoid getting their boots muddy. With giant video screens and the availability of very pricey premium VIP tickets, BST is more like a big stadium show in many ways. This year there will be performances by Elton John, Adele, The Eagles, Duran Duran, Pearl Jam and many others. - And the Rolling Stones are due to appear (on 25 June and 3 July) for the first time since 2013!
TRNSMT, Glasgow Green, Scotland:-
8 - 10 July - Weekend Tickets from £202-85p at trnsmitfest.com
Pronounced “Transmit” as if the vowels weren't missing, TRNSMT is a major event in Scotland's musical year. With its city centre location close to the banks of the River Clyde, this festival has a strong local flavour featuring Lewis Capaldi, The Snuts and Nina Nesbitt as well as Ella Henderson, Wolf Alice and The Strokes.
CORNBURY, Great Tew Park, Oxfordshire:-
8 - 10 July - Tickets from cornburyfestival.com (and 2020 and 2021 tickets will be honoured)
One of the most beautifully located British music festivals, set in the heart of Oxfordshire's Cotswold Hills, Cornbury attracts so many VIPs amongst its audience that it is often referred to as “Poshstock”. Several former prime ministers have been seen there as well as local residents like the Beckhams, Jeremy Clarkson, Kate Moss and so many more. Very family-friendly and extremely well-run, Cornbury always has quality musicians amongst its performers. This year these will include Bryan Adams, James Blunt, Jools Holland and orchestra, Ronan Keating, Mica Paris, The Waterboys, Andy Fairweather Low, Staks and many more.
KENDAL CALLING, Lowther Deer Park, Cumbria:-
28 - 31 July - Tickets from £178-75p at kendalcalling.co.uk
A four-day gem of a festival set in the picturesque Lake District, for its 15th event, Kendal Calling has a quality mix of rock, pop and dance. Headliners Supergrass, Stereophonics, Bastille and Hacienda Classical are joined by Sophie Ellis-Bextor bringing her kitchen disco to the stage plus Craig David, Tom Grennan and Gabrielle, Faithless, The Wombats and many others.
FAIRPORT'S CROPREDY CONVENTION, Cropredy, Oxfordshire:-
11 - 13 August - Tickets available at fairportconvention.com
Having been absent in 2020 and 2021, original folk-rock band Fairport Convention will again be hosting their half-century old festival in rural Oxfordshire this August. Apart from various sets by Fairport Convention themselves, other artists appearing will include Richard Thompson, Dave Mattacks, Steve Hackett and Genesis Revisited, Matthews Southern Comfort, Val Doonican and Seth Lakeman.
VICTORIOUS, Southsea Common, Portsmouth;
26 - 28 August - Tickets from £170-50p at victoriousfestival.co.uk
Overlooking the waters of The Solent, Portsmouth's well-established festival has put together another strong bill for this year. Indie-pop features strongly with some dance and pop. Artists appearing include the Stereophonics, Paolo Nutini and Sam Fender plus James, Suede and the Sugababes plus Anne-Marie. 'Masked Singer' host Joel Dommett will headline the comedy line-up.
READING & LEEDS, Richfield Avenue, Reading & Branham Park, Leeds;
26 -28 August - Day Tickets from £96-75p, now mainly at ticketmaster.com
These are well-established (and now linked) festivals that usually attract thousands of the nation's teenagers. Music has always been the top priority for the organisers with food, comfort and general wellness sometimes coming a poor second. This year's line-up will include Dave, Arctic Monkeys, Rage Against The Machine, Megan Thee Stallion, Bring Me Horizon and Halsey.