The 2003 festival season is in full swing, and BBC News Online would like to find out what you think of this year's events.
It's all too much at Reading - sent in by Goldfish
Whether it is a rock, dance, classical or jazz event, and wherever in the world it is, we want your account of what happened.
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This page is now closed - read on for a selection of reviews from 2003's summer festivals.
Feeder were excellent at V-Fest and Linkin Park were brill at Reading. A big thans to the security and police for keeping us all safe during the festivals. The toilets were disgusting as usual.
I've just been to Reading for the first time and it was amazing. Inme kicked it all off with a quality set which set the tone for a brilliant weekend of music. My particular favourites were the Used and The Darkness, who I feel should have been made headliner or at least given a longer set. I must give special praise to Aaron Lewis of Stained who gave one of the performances of the festival when the electric guitars packed up and he was left to take on the main stage on his own doing an acoustic session which was absolutely amazing.
To be honest, I can't think of a band who disappointed and the only bad point was the price of food and drink, especially the water considering the sweltering heat.
However, the highlight of the week had to be Metallica who rocked the main stage with their two-hour session which finished the festival off.
Reading festival gets better every year. I wish life was like a festival - great music during the day and lots of nutters to befriend at night. A bit of advice though - Beware - not all of the "Free Hugs" are free - one of them could be a pick pocket.
Reading revellers from Paul Cuthbertson
Just back from Leeds - superb bands, brilliant weather, great atmosphere and so many fantastic memories. Downsides? How about 2 hour queues to get into the arena, £2.50 for one room-temperature bottle of water, 30-minute hike from arena to tent, poor lighting, filthy toilets and hills everywhere? Will go again next year - for the 5th year running - but please sort out the site layout!
Neil C, Scotland
Just come back from my 5th Reading festival and all I can say is - Mean Fiddler, if you want to keep selling more and more and more tickets for your festivals start increasing the size of the arena, there were points when it felt increasingly more clostrophobic especialy on Sunday, there were some great punk bands playing on the concrete jungle stage but the tent was tiny, the campsite toilets really were horrible (made the Glastonbury toilets smell positively fragrent) and water was £2 a bottle!
Big Day Out At The Green in Glasgow was fantastic for a one-day job. Amazing weather and the bands were excellent, especially the Chilis and Electric Six. Only stumbling point was the guards removing all bottled water from you on entry and the retailers selling it at £1.50 a pint inside. Were they trying to break the record for most cases of sunstroke and dehydration caused in pursuit of money? Time to stop this type of greed I think.
Again, the Reading Festival rocked. Electric 6 were hilarious, The Darkness have some real talent and Blur... well just fantastic! It was the perfect weekend, the sun was shining and the music was amazing. Here's to Reading 2004...
Leeds 2003. Simply amazing. None of the trouble that was predicted - just 50,000+ people enjoying some outstanding acts. For me it was difficult to choose betweeen the three headliners I saw Metallica, the Spree and Blur - each very diferent, each completely outstanding. Musn't forget the outstanding Elbow. Many thanks to all those people whose toes I must have stood upon, as I euphorically made my way to the mosh pit. Next year is a must already.
Ian Hale, UK
Don't forget Zurich's Street Parade which took place on 9th August with more than 900,000 people attending. This is a major European Festival (House Music, Techno etc) with a huge array of top DJs performing & deserves to be mentioned by the BBC.
Stephen Rae, Switzerland (ex Scotland)
As proud as I am of having Homelands in my home county of Hampshire, looking back this year was the worst I've been to, the event gets smaller, the drinks get pricier and the music seems to not have much contrast, with a few exceptiona to the rule, Del La Soul, Audio Bullies, were entertaing and a few DJs like Fergie mashed it up big style, next year I'm taking in 24 cans even if I have to wrestle the 16-year-old "security" girls for it. Still better than watching telly as long as it's not raining.
Reading was amazing. Bowling for Soup stole the show yet again, the fans seemed to get well into it and loved every band except GC. Charging £2 for water is a disgrace
I went to Reading festival this year for the first time and it was excellent. The Darkness were fantastic, Justin Hawkins is beyond words, I was in the mosh pit for Blink 182 and I've never had so much fun in my life. The atmosphere was really good and everybody seemed to enjoy themselves. The only gripe is the cost of food and drink there but the supermarkets are near enough to buy any essentials. I would recommend the festival to anyone who likes rock of any kind and who wants to relax and having a damn good laugh.
Reading was great once again, Metallica and SOAD were amazing, and Less Than Jake's energy was astounding. My sympathy goes out to the friends and family of Kieran Anthony Griffin, may he rest in peace.
Ciaran, N. Ireland
I was a festival virgin until Friday when Reading 2003 kicked off. Now finally rid of three days of dirt (although still have the smell of smoke in my hair) I have to say that I have had the best three days of my life. Thank you to Staind whose electric guitars refused to cooperate leaving them to play an acoustic set - it was short but truly amazing. The Darkness proved that there is not enough Spandex in rock but many fans with day tickets for Saturday were disappointed that they had been moved to higher on the bill on Friday. A fantastic weekend and I can't wait to go next year - even the loos weren't as bad as I had expected!!
Reading festival was great until we got back to our tents after watching Metallica to find them slashed and all our stuff had been either thrown around the site or stolen. What happened to all the security they claimed to have. When one of our group asked for help she was told that the steward couldn't help because he had to watch the toilets. The festival site has grown over the years, but the arena has stayed the same size. It seems that they are expanding beyond their capability to control the site. On Friday, bottled water was being taken off people as they entered the arena, then you had to buy the same water for £2 a bottle! It was too hot to make people pay that much for water when it can be bought in super markets for far less.
The Reading festival is the first festival I've ever been to and it was brilliant. Blink 182 were amazing and i had a fantastic time - I'd definitely go back and I'd definitely recommend it to people. If I have anything negative to say its that £4 for 3 bottles of water and £5 for 2 99 ice-creams seems a bit too expensive when the entrance fee costs £40 or £96.
Fairport Convention at Cropredy, Oxfordshire - by Allen Webb
Reading 2003: I had the best weekend of my life, but I need to sleep for a week. Everyone I saw play was brilliant, with Beck and Placebo being particular highlights but nothing can possibly match the extreme excellence of Metallica. They blew everybody else into the mosh-pit. Fantastic atmosphere all weekend, we've all truly exhausted ourselves and our bank accounts. Reading rocks and I can safely tell you that rock is well and truly alive and kicking - brilliant
Attended Leeds festival - full weekend tickets.
Everything was well organised and went well, and I would definitely go again. The only things I would make negative comments about were the toilet facitities outside of the main area (making people heave) and the lack of info about lineups and which tents are which! The security presence was excellent and there was a good atmosphere all round.
Kathryn Oldman, UK
Just got back from my first Reading weekender. It was brilliant, I could never have expected it to be so good!!Highlights for me were thousands cramming into Radio One stage to scream 'Gay Bar' with Electric Six and swinging to Hot Hot Heat! I may now even be a converted metallica fan :s they rocked the main stage last nite! Just going to have a big bath now-5 days of mine and other peoples sweat not a pretty sight!! Rock on Reading, see you guys next year!xx
Fran R, England
Leeds Festival was packed full of brilliant bands. Highlights such as Funeral For a Friend, The Darkness, All American Rejects, The Used and Blink 182 rocked my socks off. I got on the big screen and even the lead of Hundred Reasons started people waving after me doing so...I'm really tired now, but it was worth it!!!
Ray J, England
Leeds festival has been really excellent for me this year. I ended up going as an Oxfam steward, I've met so many cool people, and seen the bands that I wished to see. Glad that it ended on a high rather than riots too.
We went to Leeds festival on the Saturday. OK GO rocked the Radio 1 tent before hundreds more squashed in there to see Alien Ant Farm, we got totally crushed... which was cool. Staind suprised us all, not a band we expected to rock a festival, but they did with a very moving set making them contender for the best headliner. In contrast Blink182 graced the stage with their usual your mom jokes. Ending the night was Linkin Park who managed to get most of Leeds jumping with their new songs. We left that night with T-shirts dripping in sweat - a sign of a good festival. Leeds was a fun and friendly day.
Hayden, Matt, Dave & Carl, England
Just back from a fantastic weekend of music at V festival (Hylands Park, Chelmsford). The Saturday line-up was particularly strong - difficult decisions had to be made when we found out many of our favourite bands playing at the same time on different stages.
Highlights of the weekend included Echo and the Bunnymen sounding as good as when I last saw them (God - was that really 1983?!), the hilarious Hive, the fantastic Chilli Peppers jamming I Feel Love ,and Coldplay surprising me with just how good they are live
Red Hot Chili Peppers at V in Weston Park, from Ian O'Toole
The best set of the weekend - the awesome Foo Fighters!
Just come back from V at Weston Park. Our first festival in a while. Bands were fantastic. Chilli Peppers awesome. However - how far between the car park and the campsites?! Other gripes: 2 quid for water when it was free from the taps? How come the arena got better loos than the campsites? And what a complete screw up with the cash machines on Sunday morning. V need to get a bit better organised. Otherwise, we had a great time and depending on the line up next year may go again.
Emily & Stewart, England
Saturday at V Hylands Park was absolutely amazing. The crowd was really chilled and yet up for it at the same time. The Foo Fighters and Athlete were amazing but Coldplay were best and worth the cost alone. The only downside was missing Feeder and Turin Brakes. Dave Grohl said V is the posh festival and he is definitely right but I think this is a good thing if you want a relaxed atmosphere, plenty of lager and good music.
This year's V festivals line up was one of the best to be seen, with the Chillis and Foo Fighters headlining on both days. But what I'll remember this year's festival for will be the 4 and a half hour stationary wait I spent in my car as they tried to clear cars through two single file exits. Next year I'll park elsewhere!
The Big Chill - one word - Hexstatic.
V at Chelmsford. Brilliant lineup on both days - Coldplay flawless on Sat night. David Gray provided brilliant sundown music on Sunday. Crowd loved Chili Peppers -amazing finale to a top weekend. Chelmsford has never been so cool.
Tim, Shepherds Bush
I've been going to Glastonbury festival for over 20 years and was a veteran of the old Stonehenge festivals. A week ago I went to Hawkfest which was held near Garstang and this was easily the best festival I've ever attended.
I went to the MTV festival in Popeye village in Malta which was in a bay where there is a whole village built for the 1975 Popeye film. We arrived on our yacht and moored up in the bay right in front of the main stage. There were about 5,000 people and a whole range of some of the finest international DJs playing. It went on till four in the morning and the last two DJs - one from Estonia and the other from Italy - just blew us away completely. Just a case of being in the right place at the right time!
I went to Wacken Open Air in Germany and had the time of my life! The bands were all fabulous, and left me with many lasting memories! The whole atmosphere was brilliant, and this, topped off with superb weather and organisation made it a real success. Certainly the best metal fest in the world!
We all went to Fruitstock at Regent's Park, London, organised free by Innocent Smoothies. It was really nice place with laid back people, nice fresh fruit, cold beer, having a picnic and friends round. It was a real nice and relaxed day and wonderfully organised!
Just came back from a very damp and muddy Global Gathering, however it didn't stop the masses enjoying a line up featuring some of the best DJs in the world. Absolutely fantastic time was had by all although you felt you were being ransomed when you had to pay £2 for a cup of tea!
Alastair Hardwick, UK
Went to Global Gathering this weekend - stomped the night away in Sundissential and the Godskitchen arena. Shame it rained so much - it made is sooo hard to walk through the mud in my fluffy boots!!
I'd do it all again tomorrow if I could. Lab4 and Lisa Lashes were awesome, but Push's set blew me away!
The Wickerman Festival at Dundrennan, Dumfries and Galloway happened last weekend. This was the second year, it was and will be great.
Womad was amazing this year, first time I've been and definitely the best festival I've been to. Friendly, peaceful atmosphere, a community spirit and some excellent bands - even the loos were clean which has to be a festival first. Sotho Sounds and Sevara Nazarkhan were real highlights and got everyone dancing. Definitely a must for 2004.
Womad festival was very wet and soggy this year but still great! The highlight for me was seeing Ensemble Kaboul in the Siam Tent on Sunday morning - they were amazing and the fact that they have been able to perform traditional Afghan music from all the different regions of Afghanistan was a miracle in itself considering what the members of Ensemble Kabuol have been through. Here's hoping they are back at Womad next year!
Linda Beckett, UK
We have just got back from Godskitchen Global Gathering, the festival was excellent, the music was amazing & the mud & rain definitely didn't dampen the spirits, one of the friendliest crowds I've ever seen, here's hoping for more sun next year!
Andy G, UK
Just like to tell every one how great T in the Park was. The atmosphere was the best and everybody got along, like one big party! The highlight for me was Coldplay, but the Proclaimers were also fantastic. This festival is a must for any music lover, so I'll see you all next year!!!
So Jack McConnell reckons that T in the Park "...symbolises the modern Scotland that we want to portray."
I hope he doesn't mean the drunken teenagers singing sectarian songs ankle deep in litter.
Mitchell Fraser, Scotland
T in the Park - a great weekend. Personal highlights were the Mars Volta's storming short set and underworld rocking the NME stage.
Nick Mitchell, Scotland
The 10th T in the Park and only the fourth to feature a full weekend of the ever elusive sunshine. The greatest crowd in the world at the best organised festival. The highlights were numerous but special mention must go to the Flaming Lips.
Popular opinion may have been disappointment at the White Stripes no-show but those in the know were confident that Wayne Coyne's veterans were far better suited to the second headliner slot on the main stage and so it proved. An army of new fans were won on Saturday night with the finest live show around at the moment.
Other unsung heroes were the Thrills. It is always fantastic to see a band overwhelmed by the reaction of the audience in Scotland and the Thrills deserved it!
Brian Steele, Scotland
Download - Metallica rocked! Pure and simple!! I was waiting for their tribute band but they came out instead! Fantastic. You could tell they enjoyed themselves too.
The only downsides to Download were the waste of money Camping Plus tickets were (and still having to pay more for parking) and the ban on bonfires and candles.
Still, despite Limp Bizkit pulling out, Metallica made it all worth-while. Thanks guys!!
Ian Scott, UK
Monsters of Rock has rebranded itself for the 21st century and is now Download. I went on the second day - and what a day! A brief downpour couldn't dampen the spirits of a crowd royally entertained by a fantastic line-up topped off by the indecently powerful Audioslave. A surprise afternoon appearance by metal horses Metallica might have upstaged many headline acts - but the alliance between ex-Soundgarden singer Chris Cornell and Rage Against the Machine's furious riffing even outpowered the jumbos screaming into the sky out of East Midlands Airport. A heady climax to a wildly pleasurable day.
Clare O'Brien, Scotland
Download - This could have been better. I was most disappointed to find out that Metallica had been there and we had missed them. This was unfair of Clear Channel to not inform people and if they were worried about the contract then that is a stupid excuse. Surely now, Reading and Leeds know that Metallica played Download so they are still in breach of their contract?
Also I think charging £5 to park was disgusting, especially as we had all paid extra for camping and parking. Oh... and I feel sorry for all the people who paid even more to go camping plus but then turned up to find out that there weren't enough spaces so they had to camp in the normal campsite. This festival had the potential to be great commercialism!
Download was excellent. Great weather, great bands and expensive beer!! And only 20 mins from my house!
Donington will always be the spiritual home of metal and it's great to see it back!
I challenge any fan of manufactured music to tell me rock/metal is dead!
James Playfair, England
Download - great music but the rest of the set up was awful. Had to queue for hours for everything and the layout of the site made it worse with bottlenecks everywhere. The prices for food, drink, parking etc. were shocking. The sound on the main stage was terrible too.
Download - Maiden stole the show, only went to see them!! Great performance, shame about the aircraft flight paths. Downsides also included the horrific merchandise prices, the stupid queues for cash machines, not being let back out once you were in unless you were camping and the hell that was getting between the two stages. Good job Maiden made it worthwhile in the end!
Download was awesome, doubt there is another like it this year, all the bands were great as was the crowd atmosphere throughout. Not even the downpour cooled things off even though I was gutted at having to pack my stuff up and leave virtually straight after, but all the same, bring on Download 2004. Is it humanly possibly to recreatesuch an amazing festival?! Download is the dogz....
Ric Austin, England
Download....Average weekend, decent line-up marred by poor sound on the main stage. A mix of many different fans, liking many different bands, but as usual let down by the idiots throwing bottles, as the drummer from Mudvayne found out when a bottle hit him. A surprise from Metallica kept a lot of fans very happy and the weather held out until Zwan's set which saw people using the lining put down to mark out paths as a rain cover.
Highlights included the return of the open pit (unlike the Ozzfest which only allowed a 1000 or so into a cordoned off area), great sets from Iron Maiden, Audioslave, Mudvayne, Disturbed (once the mic was switched on), covered areas where people could escape the sun, watch films and play on games consoles, and two stages offering a variety of different styles.
The down points were the horrible open air urinals, the expense of the whole event, the poor main stage sound and the idiots who found it funny to throw bottles at the stage and randomly into the crowd, hitting many people in the face.
I was in the third row at Download because i'd heard that Metallica were playing through a good source, so we were ready in the tent at just the right time when it all went off big time.
The sound check must have been 40 minutes long and things were geting restless to say the least.
I never went to Download expecting to see my personal heroes, I went to see people like Disturbed ect.
I'd like to thank Metallica for giving us the fans a day to remember for ever - thanks guys, you are true rock gods.
Still recovering from working on the bar at Download. The atmosphere was amazing, the people were fantastic and we all had a great time getting you drunk. Cheers guys.
Download, really fed up, we missed Metallica.
Should have been on the main stage so everyone could enjoy them!!
Ruth Maddison, Nottingham, England
I went to the Primavera Sound Festival, Barcelona last Saturday. We had a great time although the weather was unseasonably wet. The highlights where the White Stripes, Mogwai and definitely Roni Size who had the whole place jumping to his brand of drum and bass.
Jim Taylor, Spain
Movement 2003: Detroit's Electronic Music Festival featured a return to its roots and a move away from crass commercialism. Despite the last minute nature of the organisers efforts. The festival went off as a celebration of the sound and its evolution from the town that started it all.
Mike Christie, United States
As a reader from Los Angeles, I have yet to experience a true European festival. But out here in Los Angeles there is a budding festival which aspires to be what you guys have. It's called Coachella, and it takes place over two days in April. This was the fourth annual, and the highlight in my opinion was Underworld's amazing two-hour set. The White Stripes were also great, as were The Beastie Boys, Interpol, Fischerspooner, and Timo Maas. It's exciting for me to see, post-Woodstock, that we aren't complete and utter barbarians and people can still come together for a weekend of music without incident. One day, Edinburgh...
Buzz Chatman, USA
Homelands this year was a disgrace, it seems to be getting smaller every year with the same old acts. Waste of 55 quid!
Will Dawe, UK
Charleston Festival. near Brighton: I went to the Charleston Festival held at Charleston Farmhouse the home of Virginia Woolf and her sister Vanessa Bell where I saw Patti Smith and Oliver Ray perform. Patti was just fantastic, even after all these years her performance of singing and reading poetry is just as brilliant as when she first started out. And those records just don't do justice to her voice, to hear her sing Gloria or Wing live can't compare to her records.
Nigel Symon, UK
There is no better way of starting the summer then an 18 hour dance music marathon at Homelands! The weather held on and the tunes were out of this world! One DJ made the night for us and that was a certain crazy Irish feller named Fergie! The only bad thing was the officials shutting him down before mid-night, (some rubbish about it being too late at night!?!?!?) other then that it was a top night and we can't wait for Global Gathering in July!
Matt/Raf, United kingdom of Homelands
Just returned from the Download weekend at Donington - some great bands, good atmosphere, but pervasive evidence that festivals are getting more and more commercial - the organisers didn't miss a trick to get more money out of you! Whether it was from a glossy "programme" that didn't give you showtimes (£10), an actual programme on a laminate-style string that did (£5), to constant premium rate text-message 'competition' announcements on the big screens and the continuing sense that you weren't a rock fan, you were a captive consumer.
Apart from that, how else do you get to see Iron Maiden, Ministry, Metallica, and Audioslave, all in two days?!
Verdict: Great weekend, shame about the storm on Sunday night!
Download: I just got back from the festival, and all I can say is WOW! Iron Maiden AND Metallica! I can now die happy.
Scott Preece, UK
Download: A first-class lineup, brilliant weather and a surprise performance by Metallica combined to create an atmosphere that was as near perfect as you could expect from a rock festival.
To the relief of the 40,000+ attendees the weather stayed fine and warm - a godsend for all concerned - and it set the mood for what felt like a return to the classic Monsters Of Rock festivals of the 80s and early 90s.
As I sit here to write this my arms and face are sunburned, my feet are sore, my back aches, I can barely talk as a result of shouting and barely hear as a result of too much loud music for two solid days. Did I enjoy it? Was it worth it? Would I recommend the Download festival to friends, colleagues and passers-by? Dumb question really! Can't wait for next year...
Chris Russell, UK
Donington (aka Download) was excellent. Great weather, expensive beer, rubbish food. Iron Maiden were awesome and the toilets were minging. Top do all round
Reading revellers from Paul Cuthbertson
Download: Fantastic weekend. The rightful headliners Maiden were great as ever. Perfect weather on Saturday. Only problems were stupidly priced drinks, ridiculous waiting to get into the arena (causing much sunburn), and the usual idiots throwing bottles around. Great to see a 'proper' rock festival for the first time in 10 years. Bring the old name back though!
Download: What a weekend that was, Iron Maiden were fantastic and the suprise visit by Metalica just summed up on what a fantastic weekend it was. But the highlight for me (personally) was Evanesence. Great singer, excellent tunes. Bring on Download next year!!!
Dave G, UK
Still recovering from working on the bar at Download. The atmosphere was amazing, the people were fantastic and we all had a great time getting you drunk. Cheers guys.
Download: Great bands, fantastic weather (apart from Sunday evening) and fun all round !
Pity about paying for parking and the cash machines being so bad !
There were not long queues to see Metallica at Download festival. I managed to get in without having to wait just as the band came on stage.
Download: To all those who are whinging about plastic bottles being thrown at Donington. THAT IS WHAT HAPPENS AT DONINGTON. It always has, even in the good old days when we could take in 8 pint containers. They were thrown around too, normally full of a foul yellow liquid... They even gave out 7" vinyl discs once which became very effective ( and dangerous) missiles!
Download: It was great and I'm a happy bunny. But get the name right next time - its DONINGTON, MONSTERS OF ROCK.
Gary Watt, England
The £140 tow-away charge I had to pay the police last weekend when my car was removed from Stonehenge during the otherwise free solstice celebrations still represents far better value for money than the extortion charged this year for both Glastonbury and V Festival tickets... I am going to neither of these this year as the line up seems to just be all the same bands playing musical chairs with the festival lineups and its all the same bands as last year just playing in differnet fields. What's the point??
David Howe, UK
The weekend Glastonbury was on, I went to a mini festival on Clapham Common where Groove Armada were playing. Couldn't have asked for a better day, sunny, warm and with great company, who needs Glastonbury when you can enjoy a small festival with friends!?
I was at Guilfest on Saturday and it was a great day out. The bands on the main Radio 2 stage were very good, esp. Undertones and Stranglers but... The best act of the night was on the Uncut stage and was Richard Thompson. When are people going to realise that Thommo is our greatest living singer songwriter and the most fantastic guitarist? This man should be headlining and playing for hours and hours - he is that good! Thank you Richard for another brilliant performance, do some more gigs soon!
Jez Denton, England
T in the Park rocks and has the best atmosphere of all the festivals! It is just one of Scotalnds many treasures, and I'll certainly be returning next year to do it again.
T in the Park The best Scottish music festival ever! It gets better every year and it's here to stay!B ring it on!!
john sinclair, edinburgh
We went to the Respect festival at the Millennium Dome with group of relatives. This was the first time I ever went to this sort of event. The whole atmosphere was brilliant.
Went to Pride in the Park held in Hyde Park in London. Great atmosphere and always the highlight in the gay calendar. Sadly the British summer let us down and the heavens opened later in the day. Still we had the fab dance tents which were rocking and packed. Fantastic to finally be allowed to host the event in the royal parks which is long overdue. Downside were the slightly inferior acts on the main stage and having to queue for bar tokens which took ages. Congrats to all for organising what was still a great day out.
The Isle of Wight Festival was pretty good. The Thrills who performed on the Saturday were good.
Jamie Murphy, London, UK
T in the Park - Highlight of the whole weekend had to be The Flaming Lips set. Downside was the poor sound from the Main Stage.
Get it sorted!
V at Weston Park: Fantastic hot and sunny weather right up until about 5pm on Sunday. The toilets were full and absoutely dire, when we arrived on Friday night....before the music even started. That got better, believe it or not, as the festival progressed, as they tried to keep them useable. Spearhead on the NME stage really worked the crowd and managed to get everyone to sit down during one song, to get back in touch with the Earth! Probably the best performance there. So many good times not enough space. However the organisers definition of food at "average high street prices" stretched credibility! £2.00 for a 500ml bottle of Cola? See you there next year!
David , Newcastle , UK
Drove all the way up to V at Weston Park from Sussex to see the Red Hot Chili Peppers. The band were fantastic but the sound was appalling- SUCH a shame- what on earth happened? Could hear Underworld from a different stage better than I could hear the Chilis on the V stage. I felt ripped off! Also £2 for a bottle of coke or water? £6.50 for two hot chocolates and some cookies? Sort out the rip off food and drink and we'd be sorted!
Hayley Warren, England
V at Weston Park - Great weekend, Ash were the highlight for me - didn't realise how many of their songs I knew! All in all it was fab - although the waiting 4 hours to leave the car park at the end wasn't so good!
This summer I have been to both V at Weston Park and Glastonbury. I think it telling that although I was crippled with a bad back at Glasto I enjoyed it far more. The line up at V was brilliant but a combination of paying 6 quid for a useless programme, extremely poor sound on the main stage, unimaginative overpriced catering, the scally having a wee next to me in the main arena during Coldplay and taking four hours just to leave the car park last night dimmed my enthusiasm.
The spirit of Glastonbury just can't replicated and I look forward to next year. Virgin you could learn a thing or two.
V - Chelmsford. Saturday. A good variety of bands there, and a great selection to appeal to all. Highlights include Un-cut, The Futureheads, Athlete, The Foos and of course Coldplay. Lows? Missing Turin Brakes and Feeder to see the Foos and Coldplay!
Great weather, great atmosphere apart from the odd one or two stoners, and a definite lighter festival for those of you who, like me, prefer the relaxed atmosphere and variety of things to do as opposed to more hardcore festivals such as Glasto. I'll be going again next year, and maybe for the entire weekend this time!
Danielle, Kent, UK
How useless was the car parking at V Weston Park. We left the Coldplay gig early to get a head start and ended up in the car park for 3 and a half bloody hours!!! Quick to take your money but can't be arsed to organise it properly - won't go again but unfortunately this will not deter thousands of others from lining the pockets of incompetents. Foo Fighters were brilliant though!!!!!
Maria Jayes, England
Saturday at V2003, Weston Park was great. PJ Harvey and David Gray were excellent and Chilli Peppers proved to be a great headline act. On the negative side, some of the food retailers were ripping people off (£7 for a tray of noodles!!). Luckily we found a side exit from the car park but most people were queuing because they didn't know there were more exits.
Simon , Birmingham, UK
I live in Chelmsford & walked to V on both days... a fantastic festival, if a little clinical. The music was great, but some of the organisation sucked. Very bad access for pedestrians, ill lit at night & not enough security people to give guidance & advice. There was a very long queue to get in on saturday with little information about what was going on or what other queues we could join...I've never had to queue for so long at V before. Glasto & Reading have way more toilets per person... the 30 min queue was depressing, even if the toilets were extremely clean, I'd rather have more dirty ones so I could get on with watching the bands. PJ Harvey ruled the day!
Although I live just ten minutes walk from the V festival site in Chelmsford I took the decision to drive 250 miles to Exeter instead to see a totally different festival. Beautiful Days at Escot Park, Devon is the first of a brand new annual festival organised by The Levellers who are frustrated by the total commercialisation of most of the more well known festivals and wanted to have a festival where the object of the exercise would be to entertain people rather than extract the maximum amount of money from every person that walks though the gate. I must declare this event a success from top to bottom. The overall atmosphere was that of a proper festival, something I have not felt at the V Festival since 1997 and something that sadly I think Glastonbury will never see again.
David Howe, Chelmsford UK
V - Hylands Park.
Excellent Weekend, Sun, Beer and great music. Hives, Foo Fighters and the outstanding Coldplay on Saturday. How do you top that.. Simple, the brilliant Skin, Morcheeba, David Gray and then the mighty Chili's. Was still bouncing around on Monday at work...
Mike , England
Just got back from V at Staffordshire. Great line-up didn't enjoy the 5 hour wait to leave though! Reading next year...
Man, I had a fantastic time in V Festival (Hylands Park)! The crowds were friendly and very enthusiastic under such gorgeous sunny weather! Loved both headliners Chilis and Coldplay, they were amazing! Likewise with the superb and loud Foos, likeable Cardigans, the irrepressible Hives and marvellous Ash! I enjoyed it so much that Im already thinking of going next year and hoping Foos will headline then! That would be perfect!
Chris Dougal, London, UK
First time at V, enjoyed but think Reading festival is much better organised. Line up was fab though, but agree about the sound problems when Chillis were on. Highlights for me were Ash (as always) Foo Fighters, Hives and The Coral!!
Elaine, Liverpool, UK
V Festival in Staffordshire this weekend was the most unorganised event I have ever been to. Toilet and water provision in the campsites would have been laughable had I not had to endure the hour+ long queues. The over-priced, lacking in quality arena food and entertainment sucked a lot of the atmosphere out of the event, which was saved by one thing - The Red Hot Chili Peppers. The organisers, however, appeared to be a bit miffed we were having so much fun and decided to cut their encore short, asking them to leave the stage early. The finale to the weekends 'organisation' was trying to fit 50,000 vehicles out of one field, with a single track exit. The 'organisers' decided the best way to handle this problem was to sit by their vans drinking tea watching the free-for-all unfold. Glastonbury next year.
Went to V Festival in Stafford. Great weekend, great bands and great music. But it did take six hours to get from the car park to the exit. Which, i think, is a bit stupid. Sort it out next year please. Sort of ruined the weekend
V Festival: My first ever festival, at age 47 - this was an interesting (and tiring) experience. The good stuff? Athlete are headliners-in-waiting, Underworld were awesome, and The Bunnymen hit the spot, despite them phoning in their performance. Bad stuff? The Competition Commission should look at the £2 water bottles, and worst of all, we spent 2 hours trying to find our car on the first night, no signs or help from anyone!
John Hodgson, England
Just got back from the V festival at Chelmsford. The line up was fantastic and the crowd very chilled out. There were loads of different food stalls albeit a bit on the pricey side. There were certain things which weren't very well organised. Several hundred thousand people trying to get through 'gate 4' while 'gate 2' on the other side of the park was near deserted. There was also a nasty crush as people tried to get out after Coldplay had finished their fantastic set on Saturday night. Took a few hours to get out the car park too. Great festival but lets have some better organisation please !!
Chris Turner, England
Ups: Hexstatic, The Wurzels.
Downs: John Peel, what was he thinking of playing status quo, - twice !!
Just got back from V Festival at Weston Park. It was absolutely awesome, spent a lot of money but it was worth every penny. The Hives were great, Foo Fighters rocked, David Gray provided some great sunset music but the best act by far was Coldplay who blew everyone away.
This was my first visit to V after being a Reading/Glastonbury regular for the last few years. I had two bottles of vodka seized while going from the car park to the campsite, because they were in glass bottles?! This may have been excusable had I been given the chance to pour the vodka into plastic bottles, but security snatched them out of my hands and refused to give them back... what it amounts to is theft and I had to pay arena prices (£3 a beer!) for drink for the rest of the weekend.
Benecassim Festival (FIB), Spain: Great festival now in its 9th year- Moby, Blur, Beck, Suede, Travis, Groove Armada, Moloko, The Coral, Placebo etc etc.
Goes on 'till 7am( not like 11pm here), warm all night, friendly people from all over Europe and free camping for the whole week. Still pricey for a bottle of water (2 euro- £1.40- for 500ml!) or a beer, but brilliant!
Mike, Bristol, UK
There seems to be a lot of complaints about the commercialisation of festivals, to all those people I have two words, Bulldog Bash. Not one of the better known festivals, and really its more about bikes than, music, but its a real gem. No big companies trying to rip you off, entrance fee £35, ice cold beer or cider £2.00 a can anyone? Get bored with the bands, go and watch several thousand nutters que up to roar down the quarter mile race track on everthng from super powered bikes to rocket propelled cars. Main headliners were the Wildhearts - great - and the Fun Loving Criminals, who really caught the mood of the festival, as well as loads of other really quality rock and blues acts, not so well known but all really worth seeing. No police, no rip offs, just several thousand people enjoying the sun, the beer, the bikes and the music.
V at Weston Park: The highlight for me was having 3 of my fave bands, Goldfrapp, Moloko and Lemon Jelly having their sets one after another on the same stage, how fortunate was that! The "facilities" for the most basic of human functions were dismal... worse than that.. inhumane! I saw people vomiting after coming out of of what could laughably be called toilets. Also had a bit of a problem with the cashpoints. I mean come on, 2 cashpoints for a site that big and they regulary ran out of cash and didnt open until 11am! We gave up and left the park and went to Telford and got cash AND cheap(er) water.
Got back from V at Weston Park yesterday. While most of the bands were great, I have to say that the festival was by far and away the most commercial I have ever been to. After such a high ticket price (for the comparative lack of musical variety on offer), I expected things to be relatively cheap once inside. How wrong I was! £5 for parking, no alcohol allowed into the arena so they could charge £3 for 440ml cans, crowd surfing banned, etc.
Despite the quality of some of the bands, I will definitely NOT be going again.
Ben Smith, UK
Thoroughly enjoyed the weekend at V festival at Weston Park, but I was annoyed about the fact that I was charged £30.00 to camp all weekend, when anyone could enter the campsites without paying because there were no security checks at the entrance of the sites to check who had paid for camping.
V at Weston Park: Nice, safe, really well organised... But come on, the main stage front PA malfunctioning all day and no appology or comment, now that just isnt right! Totally ruined the Queens Of The Stone Age and The Chill's. For a £90 weekend ticket we really did expect a lot more! But sound problems aside, what an amazing weekend!!! So many good band's, such an amazing atmosphere, bring on V2K4.
V Weston Park: Coldplay were absolutely ridiculous, best gig I've ever seen. He Played with such passion and energy and connected so well with the crowd. I was so pleased (along with everyone else) when he said it was the "Best one yet" at the end.
Foo Fighters rocked it, as did Chili Peppers, but what was up with Keidis's voice? John Fraschanti is withput doubt the greatest guitarist in the world though! Best weekend ever.
Tom Pope, England
V at Chelmsford: Good festival, but as I live locally I thought going home each night would be better- big mistake! Whose bright idea was it to stop vehicle access to the pick up point at the end of the night?
Paul Bryan, England
V at Weston Park: £1.50 for a bottle of water was fairly reasonable as opposed to Homelands this year where it was £3 a bottle!!
Dan Jones, Bicester, England
I'm glad somebody has mentioned the Guilfest. I was there too on the Saturday, and yes the Undertones, the Stranglers and Madness were all excellent. The facilities were pretty good too.
Beautiful Days: This is the first festival of many hopefully? put on by the Levellers in east Devon, the idea was to get back to an original festival without all the corporate crap, It certainly worked one of the best festivals I've been to in a long time, long may it continue.
Went to Sars benefit concert in Toronto. Just shy of half a million fans. Bands included Rolling Stones, AC/DC and a bunch of Canadian groups I've never really heard of. Highlights included Justin Timberlake getting smacked in the coupon with a plastic water bottle and the wee guy from AC/DC with the school uniform. Absolutely tremendous! Dan Ackroyd and Jim Belushi were MC's for the event. What a fantastic day and all for $25 or about 12 quid.
Giggs, Largs lad in Canada
Went to Reading this year...and it rocked..apart from the harsh reception that greeted Good Charlotte.. okay so they maybe a bit teen-punkish but that doesn't alter the fact that they sounded far better than InMe and Finch (both of whom I like but who seemed overwhelmed and had real bad sound quality.) and played a really entertaining set despite the bottling!
Back from Reading with a sore head, not much sleep and a new habbit of giving out "free hugs". For me it was Pennywise who rocked the event, the tent was packed. The only bad thing was the £2 for water. Never again will i buy any thing from inside the arena
Leeds was blindin. starting the week with Good Charlotte an Metallica were surprising awesome live. Then Linkin Park stole the show on the second night. The Darkness......... what can I say it's just class. Justin Hawkins is the man in lycra. The Used, Funeral for a friend and The Darkness were the definite highlights. Was pretty nice to get sunburn instead of being drenched in mud. Bring on next year!
just been to my first Reading - absolutely fantastic! Placebo rocked my socks on the Friday, and the darkness made me giggle! AFI in the Radio 1 tent on Saturday night was great- even though I was so tired I spent most of their performance sitting on the floor!!
I went to the Fire In The Hand Festival at Castle Park, Colchester, on bank holiday Monday to see some excellent raw rock talent from groups that we could hear more of during the next couple of years. The highlights were Fleet and headliners Hush, whose lead singer had to fight off an intruder who had leapt on the stage! Who says Colchester can't host an open air rock festival? Bring on Metallica!
David, Colchester, UK
I would just like to mention our frustration and amusement after the problems at the start of System of a Down's set when Mary Anne Hobbs came on and tried to appeal to the crowd to move back. I've never seen such pathetic attempts at crowd control in my life and i think her reedy pleas to the hardcore at the front caused more apathy than cooperation. Indeed her return to stage on Saturday prompted a huge response that generally began with an F. That same night the stage manger made a much better job of it, TELLING the crowd once, and only once, to move back so that the necessary could be done. This worked much better than telling them how much he loved them and how he would buy them all a beer or get them James Hetfield's autograph. Oh, and he didn't bother swearing to try and ingratiate himself with the crowd. I dunno what anyone was thinking sending her up there!
The Highlights for me of Saturday at the Leeds festival were the fantastic bands 'Placebo' and 'The Datsuns. The Darkness were amazing and I can not wait until Leeds Festival 2004!
Going back to work tomorrow and still feeling great about Cropredy. My first experience of playing at a big festival and first time at Cropredy anyway. Everyone really really friendly, brilliant weather, loos OK, bar easy to get to and not stupidly priced, good range of music and a really mellow feel. Hope we get asked back in a couple of years as it was a lovely place to play. Awesome sound and stage - and jamming session backstage at the end of the festival was great! This festival hasn't got too big and the atmosphere is wonderful. Thanks to Peggy, Chris and Fairport for having us.
Festival: Manchester was a credit to all involved. Absolutely loved it! Let's hope it's not a one-off! Heaton Park rocked with around 30,000 and the three hotzones around the city were great! Bring on the next one!
Craig Lomax, UK