Going dotty over Bluedot Festival

Aaaah… (breathes a huge sigh of relief) spring is here.

Finally.

And whilst we didn’t have a return of the Beast From The East (thankfully), the weather over the last couple of months has certainly still been a little bit ‘unpredictable’ and challenging at times.

To say the least.

I spent quite a lot of the winter looking forward to the warmer months and making plans for the summer; holidays, adventures and, of course, festival season.

Although, this year we’ve decided to mix things up a little.

Every year, since they’ve been alive, my little sons have been to Shambala festival; and for the last 4 years, they’ve been to Camp Bestival.

But this year we’ve made the decision to go to neither.

Not because we don’t love them — we absolutely do — but because our summer holidays always seem to be governed by them. We block out a full week at the end of June for Camp Bestival and the same at the end of August for Shambala.

So this year, we’ve agreed to do neither; opting instead to go and explore somewhere totally different in those weeks.

But, even though I was party to this decision, the lack of festivals on the horizon was starting to make me feel a bit despondent.

Bluedot

So you can imagine my delight when my festival fairy godmother waved her magic wand and asked us to cover Bluedot Festival this year.

To say we’re excited about this is a MASSIVE understatement

For the last two years, my big (man shaped) boy has been banging on about Bluedot festival. For a space, science and music mad festival lover like him, Bluedot is the perfect mix of all three (plus a whole lot more to boot).

Plus, it’s held in the most extraordinary setting.

No castle or stately home, Bluedot takes place in the grounds of Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre; home of the iconic Lovell Telescope.

And, if that wasn’t enough, this year marks 50 years since man first set foot on the moon and — as Jodrell Bank played a unique role in tracking the Eagle Lander onto the surface — Bluedot are celebrating with an incredible lunar-themed line-up; to mark this historic event.

Orbital rocking the main stage at Bluedot 2017
Orbital rocking the main stage at Bluedot 2017
Glitterball helmets at Bluedot festival 2018
Image courtesy of Jody Hartley
Flaming lips at Bluedot 2018
Flaming lips at Bluedot 2018 | Image courtesy of Anthony Harvey

A Stellar Music Line-Up

As well as an extraordinary setting, Bluedot are also renowned for their extraordinary music line-ups.

Over the last couple of years they’ve had a plethora of amazing bands; The Flaming Lips, Alt J, Orbital, Crazy P to name a few.

And this year is no exception.

Headlining is Kraftwerk, New Order, Hot Chip and Jon Hopkins; who I can imagine — in such a surreal setting — are going to sound out of this world.

Flaming lips at Bluedot 2018
Flaming lips at Bluedot 2018 | Image courtesy of Scott Salt
Hot Chip at Bluedot festival 2019
Hot Chip — our faves | Image courtesy of Bluedot Festival
Jon Hopkins at Bluedot festival 2019
Jon Hopkins | Photograph courtesy of Dan Medhurst

Kraftwerk at Bluedot festival 2019

Kraftwerk at Bluedot festival 2019
The mighty Kraftwerk | Both images courtesy of Bluedot Festival
New order at Bluedot festival 2019
New Order | Image courtesy of Bluedot Festival

But — headliners aside — I’m getting really excited about the underlining bands too.

I’m bookmarking Kate Tempest and 808 State (who I’ve seen before) but also really eager to see GoGo Penguin; a three piece band from Manchester, who blend jazz with electronica and trip-hop.

I love their music — it’s haunting and uplifting — with beautiful piano melodies, and I can imagine that it will sound amazing under the watchful eye of the Lovell Telescope.

Flaming lips at Bluedot 2018
Flaming lips at Bluedot 2018 | Image courtesy of Jody Hartley

Science, Space and Intergalactic Goodness

But as well as the music on offer, Bluedot festival also boasts immersive installations, nightly parades, and a line-up of science and space experts to make your head spin.

I’m looking forward to seeing talks by Helen Sharman — the first British astronaut — plus Liz Bonnin on The Problem with Plastics.

After doing our ‘sustainability challenge‘ last summer — and going plastic free for a week — this is an issue really close to my heart so it will be fab to hear talk about it, in such an intimate setting.

Art Installation at Bluedot 2018
Image courtesy of Scott Salt
Bluedot festival 2018
Image courtesy of Scott Salt

Kids and Family Fun at Bluedot

But what about Bertie and Cosmo?

Will missing out on Camp Bestival this year mean that they won’t have a fun festival experience?

Not at all.

Whilst Bluedot may not be as kid-centric as Camp Bestival, it has a childrens’ play area and loads of science-based activities, aimed at younger festival revellers.

Kids playing with giant bubbles at Bluedot 2017
Bubbletastic! Bluedot 2017
Mini-boffins at Bluedot 2018
Mini-boffins at Bluedot 2018 | Image courtesy of George Harrison
Shiny happy people at Bluedot 2017
Shiny happy people at Bluedot 2017

To be honest, for our astronomy mad family, Bluedot looks like the perfect match.

Hanging out in a festival field with my favourite people is always a joy but this, combined with a spot of star gazing and a stellar soundtrack sounds epic.

All that, combined with the anniversary of the very first moon landing, looks like this year’s Bluedot is set to be out of this world.

Tickets for this year’s Bluedot Festival 2019 (July 18th to 21st) are now on sale. Check out their website; click here for info on ticket options and pricing.

The Twinkle Diaries are proud to be official bloggers for Bluedot 2019 and will receive a family pass in exchange for a full review. All thoughts and words  — as ever — are entirely my own.

About Caro Davies

Caro Davies art directed fashion and interiors before leaving the world of design to pursue a career in social media. She can now be found chasing the light — and two small twin boys.

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