Somersault Festival

On Friday morning, exactly a week after we arrived in Salcombe, it was time to pack a small bag and make our way to the complete opposite side of Devon to meet the other seasonnaires for Somersault Festival! The drive was a long two hours since the rain was absolutely miserable and pouring it down, making it very hard to see, especially in such an old and wobbly landrover. All the seasonnaires met up in a very old and even more wobbly inn, which was absolutely deserted except for the most old of all old man who apparently was the bar tender. It was a funny experience as we sat inside dry from the rain in such a bizarre place but it was so nice to see the others and we had a lot of catching up to do while we waited for our manager and the roaming seasonnaires who were stuck in traffic.
Finally when everyone had arrived, introductions were made and we drove in convoy (two land rovers, a mini and a fiat) all the way to the festival.
Our boutique camping was actually so nice, such a pleasant surprise when we arrived. The girls had a much smaller cuter tent with big inflatable beds and bright red duvets, while the guys had a massive teepee type tent with their mattresses around the edge and space to sit and chill in the middle. Our manager however, had his own morrocan themed teepee with candles and blankets…
We all made our way to the boys tent where we had a few drinks and caught up properly, while setting up the cameras and go pros before heading into the festival to enjoy our first night. It was SO muddy and stupidly the only footwear I had brought with me were my nice white converse! I felt like such an idiot squelching into the mud and hopping around the paths trying to find the drier spots! However I definitely felt better than the people who had just bought flip-flops… there was no chance for them and so shoes were left completely off and they had to brave bare feet!
The festival itself it quite small and is family based and so there was lots going on both musically and not. As we walked in we passed a massive fair ground, a well being section with massage tents and organic facial decks and then as we got further we passed dressing up stalls where you can buy tails, this made sense of all the children running around with dinosaur tails sticking out of the tops of their trousers, head masks and much more. When we arrived at the main stage we got some drinks and food and found a good spot to enjoy the first night’s music.
We listened to Laura Marling and The Staves before heading in for our first night camping!
To say I woke up feeling refreshed after a good night’s sleep would be a complete and utter lie, however our first night’s sleep was not bad at all, if a little bit cold and we were woken up by the boys at a ridiculous hour (9am), having already gone to the shops to buy us all Wellies, to start our day of getting content for Jack Wills… work basically but not.
We got dressed, some even faced the freezing showers (not me), queued for bacon butties and once we were up and energised we split into groups to get some cool festival photos. My small group started off by heading to these amazing decorated caravans where we posed and did some Jack Wills outfit of the day shots. We then got the flags out and tried to be as creative as possible before getting some more candid photos around the camp and then taking the landrover out for a spin around the festival, getting the big Jack Wills car advertisement working its magic. We did at one point, however, managed to drive up a no-entry road (we thought we’d be able to get some good photos up there) to realise we had driven into a farm. We only realised this however once we were all posing on top of the truck and then saw a head of cows running towards us! We had to climb down quick and in a panic the passenger door wouldn’t open and everyone was screaming that we were just going to have to be abandoned as the landrover was going to drive away but luckily we piled into the boot just in time to escape the cows and drive to safety.
It was then time to relax in the gorgeous sunshine and have a bit of a sunbathe, while we realised that the lead singer of Bombay Bicycle club was camping next to us! The boys had some fan photos and then it was time for us to hear into the festival. We found a sunny spot over looking the main stage where we made camp and relaxed in the sunshine listening to the chilled vibes of Rae Morris and Imelda May. As the sun started to go in and the main stage filled up, we knew exactly what the atmosphere was building up for, the main act of the night, Bombay Bicycle Club! We quickly grabbed some food and found ourselves a spot near the front just in time before the area filled up and we looked behind us to see crowds and crowds of people that weren’t there before! Then Bombay Bicycle club arrived, the crowd went wild and it was an amazing experience. Their music was perfect for the event and had everyone singing along, even to the songs they didn’t particularly know as the lyrics are catchy and everyone was having too much fun to care. During their last song, the sky filled with streamers and confetti and then Saturday night’s main stage music was over and it was time to head to the secret forest for the DJ sets and the forest party! I actually don’t know how we managed to do it but somehow we were some of the first people to get into the forest party and so didn’t queue at all, however then got a phone call from half of our group to say they were stuck in an hour queue! We danced for a fair bit, squelching in the muddy forest and enjoying ourselves until we were literally exhausted and it was time to head to our little tent.
That night the rain came in and it absolutely poured it down. It was torrential rain and thunder and with he tent walls so close to my head it felt literally as if someone was hammering on the top of our tent. It also didn’t help that I kept needing the loo so would have to run through the downpour! I’m actually not sure if I even properly slept that night but when I woke up the swamp that we were now a part of was absolutely ridiculous. The water came up level to the edge of our tent, I’m surprised it hadn’t seeped in and the mud underneath that water was basically liquid, walking around (thank god for the wellies) my feet were completely submersed and the muddy water flicked up, splashing all over us.
Moodily we all piled into the boys teepee to hide out from the ongoing rain and made a plan, we would get in the land rovers and drive to a nice pub for a big Sunday lunch! Everyone’s moods perked up and so we made our way to the nearest pub… which was full, great. We then got a phone call from our manager to say he’s arranged for us to interview one of the guys from the BBC introducing stage, and he wanted me to do the interview! It was a silver lining and it was an exciting thing to do on such a gloomy day. We found a cute little hut made out of twigs, right in the middle of the wellbeing camp and just as we were about to start the interview, the sun came out! I asked him everything from aspirations with his music to what he would put on a Jack Wills Summer Bucket List and at the end of the interview he even played us our own acoustic set so that we could here his soulful music first hand.
It was such a good way to end our Somersault experience, and head office were so happy with us because of it! But it was definitely time to leave as we got back and our tents had started leaking mud, so we packed up, said goodbye to boutique camping and headed for Salcombe and our little upside down house.