For surviving Glastonbury with kids

So you’re planning to go to Glastonbury, but childcare is expensive and you’re wondering if it could be fun to do it as a family. This isn’t something to take lightly however, so what do you need to know before setting off to the festival, kids in tow?

Should I take my kids to Glastonbury? 

First and foremost, children’s tickets are free if kids are aged 12 and under, and there are two family camping fields at Worthy Farm. So bringing them along is feasible if you already have your adult tickets sorted. But, with weather, camping and crowds of the general public to contend with, there is a lot to consider.

Here are some parents who’ve done it, and their tips for making it amazing…

1. Sort buggies and bikes

Eden Simpson lives near Glastonbury and is excited to head back with her three children this year – who are 12, six and two. In her extensive experience, how you transport kids around the festival is the most important thing.

One of my favourite festivals was 2017 when my now six-year-old was four months old . He was as content as could be in his carrier and I have such fond memories,” says Simpson. “Obviously this is dependent on age, but a decent baby or toddler carrier is great for keeping little ones safe, close and comfortable. If you’d instead prefer to take a buggy, then make sure it’s suitable for off-roading, with decent wheels. Mountain buggies or bicycle trailers are the go-to and we’ve taken the same converted bicycle trailer for several years now.

“Add an air horn to ensure people know to move out of the way. Throw in some blankets and fairy lights and voilà, the perfect cosy haven for kids to travel and chill as they get sleepy of an evening by the Pyramid Stage.”

2. Protect their ears

Children’s ears are very sensitive and it’s important to protect their hearing from festival noise. “Ear defenders are a must for obvious reasons. So don’t forget to pack them,” says Simpson.

3. Prepare for rain or shine

“Be prepared for all weather – the sun can be just as bad as the rain, so bring waterproofs, rain covers, sunscreen and sun shades,” says Simpson of the unpredictable British weather.

“I find a couple of cheap shower curtains can be super-handy to use as an extra layer when keeping dry and clean if you’re sitting on the floor, or for covering bags from the rain and dirt.”

4. Tire the kids out early on

“Head up to the Kidzfield first thing in the morning and wear the kids out before the music starts in the afternoon. Then hopefully you’ll stand a chance of watching what you want, whilst they have a snooze or play with something they’ve crafted there earlier in the day,” says Simpson.

5. Head to the family-friendly camping fields

“Opt for family camping. We would make sure we set up shop in Cockmill Meadow or near the Wicket Ground for family-friendly camping,” Simpson says. “We also found Kidney Mead to be a nice family-friendly spot. Even though it’s not a specific family field, it’s centrally located and has easy access to the Pyramid Stage and the Kidzfield. Plus as it’s up the hill, it doesn’t flood,” she explains.

When it comes to ensuring youngsters get enough sleep, Martin Wells, 47, dad to 11-year-old Poppy, says. “If they will use an eye mask or ear plugs, use them.”

6. Pack easy-to-spot bright clothes

Simpson says: “Make sure your kids are dressed vibrantly and stand out. Not only because it’s Glastonbury Festival so it’s a must, but also because it makes it easier to spot them if they try and wander off.”

7. Don’t over-plan

Ashley Thorne, who has been to the iconic festival 15 times . Including with his two-year-old, Evan, says: “We decided not to plan to see any bands. We just went with the flow and allowed our little one to decide when he wanted to eat and sleep . It just stopped the stress of having to be at a certain stage at a certain time,” he explains.

“Don’t get bogged down with times and eating or sleeping patterns . He was just coming up to two years old, so sitting down. And watching the thousands of people walk past him was a game in itself.”

8. Be aware of adult themes

Drinking, drugs, nudity and all manner of other not-so-PG things go on at a festival. And you may be worried about your kids encountering some of that.

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