Boom Town Festival 2014: Preview

25 June 2014

BoomTown fair is a temporary mini-city erected in a field deep in the heart of Winchester, South East England. It’s a festival unlike no other with a town mayor and elections where festival goers can vote for their favourite stages and acts. Built from the ground up, this independent four-day event welcomes freaks, performers, pirates, roller girls and the best in electronic music, roots and reggae, punk and ska.

Split into nine districts, the town hosts a serious line-up of huge well rigged mainstages and mini intimate pop-up style venues, plus a cosy suburban healing area. Here’s a quick break down of the areas you should be checking out at BoomTown 2014:

This area specialises in dub, reggae, dancehall and jungle with a special stage tucked away in the woodlands. Expect flag raving rastas and international reggae acts like Lady Saw, Jimmy Cliff, Congo Natty and Tippa Irie. Alongside a host of amazing UK talent, Trench Town will also be making space for heavy weight sound systems Channel One, Trojan and Iration Steppas.

On the outskirts of the Town Centre this shabby chic collection of venues showcase a mixed bag of live foot stomping music, immersive performances courtesy of Bearded Kitten, a pirate ship and the discotastic Bump roller disco - if you do anything in Old Town, just rent the shoes and go for a spin. The roller disco’s platformed location means that you can check out the Downtown area of the festival from way up high to the tune of Chaka Khan and disco greats.

Barrio Loco District
On the outskirts of town you’ll find the noisiest (and the naughtiest) parties of the festival. Be sure to check out the Poco Loco and Circo Baile in the Barrio Loco District. The decor is spiced with Latin spirit and the mainstage billing promises the best in uptempo bass and party music a la Eats Everything, Bodikka, Dub Phizix, Om Unit, Sam Bingga and Redders, and Swindle and Royal T. The Barrio district also pays host to some of the best mini pop-up parties; we highly recommend shaking a leg at The Old School Garage which is a mocked up in the style of a British garage complete with (topless) Max Power posters and banged up Ford Fiesta’s sliced in half. But don’t just take our advice on this, last year, in the 2013 town elections festival goers were asked to vote for their favourite district and Barrio Loco came out top of the pops!

Downtown Stages
If you’re looking to have it large until the small hours check out the outdoor Downtown stages: Arcadia, BoomBox, the Dance Off, The Bodyshop and ASBO Disco. Last year we were treated to Arcadia’s epic giant spider and this year it returns. Check out a hard rave and bass with: Aphrodite, Rockwell, Proxy, Ray Keith, Slipmatt and Billy Bunter, 2 Bad Mice, and Itchy and Skratchy.

Whistlers Green
If you need a timeout or want to get involved in some arts and crafts, Whistlers has an extensive timetable of activities; from creating hula hoops to jewellery making. There are also yoga classes and a variety of massage and relaxation therapies available. More details here.

We’ve provided our top five stages for music and chilling, but there’s so much more to this festival than a great music line up. This is a fully immersive experience and one should explore the full festival ground. To get fully immersed, we suggest you get a map, get a festival programme and a ticket for the travelator - this cuts out the nasty hill from Downtown to Oldtown - and get really lost in BoomTown Fair.

Full line up and details on boutique camping over at

Words: Hayley Joyes



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