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We thought the teenagers were pretty well behaved this year - the ones we saw seemed to be enjoying themselves, polite, friendly and not causing any problems. In fact we thought there was a particularly good atmosphere throughout the whole festival this year, with all ages mixing and a really good, friendly vibe. The only downside for us was in the womad camping area where the toilets were pretty grotty with no loo rolls, soap or paper towels much of the time, and none of the hand sanitzer you get in the arena loos.Otherwise a wonderful Womad!
No problems & No hassle, just tired feet now from all the dancing & walking from stage to stage...what an amazing 'non-stop' four days...thanks a million to the Womad team. Hard to make a summary of the highlights without just listing the complete line-up, Alpha Blondy, Afrocubism, Baaba, Fatoumata Diawara, Bombino, Donso... etc etc all amazing
Great weekend with some real musical highlights - lots to discover and then treasure. Food stalls pretty good but not enough - queues too long at peak times. Too much rubbish retail, arena felt cramped due to all the retail rubbish - ok if stalls are selling interesting stuff, but a lot was the same old seconds rubbish that comes out every year. Saturday afternoon evening was just on big mass with no room to move. Need more space for the paying guests and less for those pushing their wares. Camper van field was a long way from the arena, which given the premium paid seems unreasonable. Toilets and entrances all worked better than usual.
Brilliant festival, as ever. Thank you
Good things (apart from music obviously!): varied choice of food and drink; beer tents with quick service and, as far as I am aware, plentiful stocks; Frank Water (thanks for keeping me hydrated); the toilets (which although understandably smelly were for the most part clean and well stocked with paper and handwash); the litter pickers who came in and cleaned up after us all.
Not so good things: some of the sound systems were not great - couldn't hear particular instruments/vocals, also quite a bit of distracting feedback; the events security acted occasionally as if they were expecting a riot and overdid the surly behaviour just a bit too much for my liking (especially during Baaba Maal) and well yes - some of the teens were drunk/stoned, noisy during performances and with a tendency to camp amidst a sea of rubbish but basically pretty harmless - they will get better with age
The best year EVER, Wonderful loos and showers,regularly serviced, litter removed, and you seem to have solved the rowdy teenage problem (I guess they were lured to Mollys bar where they could have a super time without upsetting everyone else). This was the best ever and if people are complaining then they should try some other festivals! or try remembering WOMUD or the year that some of the loos were not cleaned or emptied from Sunday onwards. Wonderful music (a bit loud sometimes), yes and radio three stage not a relaxing place to be, BUT fantastic food, lots of stalls and other stuff happening (we even went on a bat watch). Thank you Womad faries for a wonderful weekend x
ok, here my 4pennorth
having seen and experienced problems with unaccompanied teens last year, aggression, drunkeness and heavy nitrous useage......
hurrah a return to lovely womad vibe with ages 0-90+ catered for, mega pros....
a massive range of music
fabby food outlets, not once poor meal all weekend.
Beer options plentiful, and only really ran short late Sunday.
new camping set up made things less cramped
Mollys bar a great idea, but not yet fault free
The loo faries - what a fantatsic job guys/gals
Well currated stages (excl dance)
All the teens there were ace as far as i saw, security was deffo more visible but polite and efficient unlike 2010
Improvements in absolutley no order, some from personal perspective some from converstions with others, and observation....some cons and ideas to fix
a disabled loo in the womad camping area, we find steps hard folks
disabled loos are for the disabled can we have sign to that effect these are very effective at other festivals, as is possitioning disabled loos slightly apart i.e. 15 ft from the main loo block. And to those "not very womad" people they aren't just conveniently empty big loos ! sorry to go on, you wouldn't think we'd have to say it would ya !
what happened to the dance scheduling ....my teens were heavily disappointed by the shortage of dance workshops and demos, the all singing dancing tent seemed to have become all singing except 3 sessions ....with teens being our future can we find something that meets their "world music and culture" needs PS I'm not countenancing pumping "top 20", BTW my kids would have loved african dance, street, ballet or contemporary demos esp dance from other cultures, teens music from other cultures etc etc
Kids space is great but viewed as, tweens/teens as for kids, they need chill space clear of adults and the under 10's any ideas ????
the only food we couldn't find was tibetan...tibetan kitchen next year????pretty please
Mollys bar caused a sound clash with bbc 3, trapping womad camping in the middle, plus with many young families on this site molly's running until 2pm was recipe for a sleepless night
a 90 degree re-orientation of mollys would fix this
lockable and accessible secure drugs facilitiy for disabled camping (a friend ran into this issue and had to carry her drugs around all weekend)
a method of gettng viewing platform wristbands for those disabled choosing to camp with friends but finding the additional trek to disabled camping too far, could these be collected from womad concessions on the arena when presenting copy of blue badge?
the healing fields had disruptive nights from people not leaving the area and moving to molly's, Could security not sweep through and move people on at defined end times?. These guys work hard and need their sleep too.
Possibly need to rethink the positioning of big draws like penguin cafe, gabriella y rodrigo in tent spaces, way too small, just as siam was for rolf in 2010
probably the best womad so far for us, but can't wait for 2012
like other festivals CAN we have 2012 tickets NOWWWWWW please
Agree with Nuin - we wondered why Rodrigo y Gabriella were in the Siam tent - they were always going to be hugely popular with all ages and the tent wasn't nearly big enough. Penguin Cafe were so popular that it was almost impossible to walk through towards the Radio 3 area as the crowd spilled out so far. Would the choice of venue been Womad's decision or the artists? Not sure how they work these things out.
Radio 3 stage is almost outgrowing the arboretum - it is drawing bigger and bigger crowds....and every year those trees get bigger and bigger too! We left Gogol Bordello early to go to see Feufollet and gave up as there was no space left to watch them from! No sure what the answer is because the trees have to stay and part of Radio 3's appeal is its' location. Catch 22!
Small points though - at least at Womad you can see and hear pretty much everything you want to, even when it is crowded. Very different to other festivals. We ended up listening to Feufollet from our tent with a glass of wine - and it was a lovely way to end the festival!
Another FAB year, so much fantastic music but my highlight had to be Bellowhead, they were AWSOME!!
Whoever looked after the toilets needs a medal, they were clean and mostly smell free every single day. Also well stocked with loo rolls and hand cleaner, even on Monday morning when normally they are overflowing and stinking.
I would love to see the return of the entertainment tent that used to have circus type events on (acrobats, magicians etc). That was great fun and something different if you get fed up with the music (although not quite sure why that would happen)
Only negative for me and my fellow camper were the big groups of unaccomapanied teenagers that were camping near us. It seems their parents were happy to dump their noisy, drunk kids on someone else!!!!! If people camp with their teenage children they should be made to all stay together and not be allowed to camp on their own in a different area. Arrived back at my tent one night to find rubbish everywhere and a girl being sick into a plastic bag (she only looked about 15yr!!).
One more thing i would like to mention is the FRANK water. I bought a water bottle last year for £5 but when i went to the stall this year to have a refill was told i would have to buy a wristband because i had last years bottle, or buy this years bottle!!!!! I know that its all for charity but maybe a donation box would have been better?
Agreed, Radio 3 is very busy and I can't think of a better location.
The issue of space hogging using with chairs has already been mentioned elsewhere, they take up space. If like me you take a chair or wish to sit down, then we should accept the need to be behind the trees at the back whilst everyone else stands up in front of the trees to get the max. number in the delightful clearing. After all its not a classical concert in an expansive park and you dont need to see an artist to enjoy it..
I was near the front of Feufollet laid out flat (taking up the space of 4 people standing) looking at the stars not realising it was so crowded behind me.
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