Wide-eyed and bursting with excitement, the newbies bought a programme the moment they walked through the gate. They've ridiculously overpacked, but somehow still forgotten the toilet roll, an error they'll live to regret all too soon. Having set up their tent (eventually), they'll make a meticulous schedule of who they're seeing. However, unfamiliar with having to pace themselves, they'll party far too hard on the first night. With the majority of their money and alcohol gone, the schedule will be abandoned to deal with the hangover. Think of the newbie like a puppy, take them under your wing, train them up and keep them hydrated.
Largely made up of wannabe influencers, they spend the majority of their time looking fierce and taking the perfect selfie. They do it for the gram and they're here for the likes, not the music. All their interactions with the festival are carefully planned and fabricated to look like they're having the time of their lives. If they are watching a performance, it's through their phone screen, as they live-stream and record the whole thing for their followers. They'll spend 10 minutes taking the perfect boomerang of their sequins glittering, as they shimmy in front of an artsy backdrop. Hours of planning has gone into each #Ootd and to be fair to them, it shows they've nailed all the festival fashion trends.
Video Credit: @thepunkrockers via Instagram
Everyone loves a bit of glitter (especially if it's eco-friendly), but some people take it to the extreme. They go one of two ways:
1. Head to toe in a series of mismatching, shimmery, sequin-covered clothes with gems and glitter on their face and hair.
2. Their "clothes" are made entirely from glitter, which looks more like a second skin. The suns rays bounce off them, reflecting light and colours everywhere, dazzling like a giant kaleidoscope. Walking Glitter Balls are either utterly memorising or look like a unicorn threw up on them.
Although it can be hard to tell the difference at times, this is no Newbie. They've been here before, multiple times, but still, haven't learnt their lesson. Often found scattered in a strangers' campsites or at the edge of the crowds. They're "just going to sit down for a minute" and they'll catch their friends up, but it's too late and they're out for the count and won't be resurfacing until the next day.
Having arrived at the barrier before the first act has even sound checked, they're in it for the long haul. They want to be at the front for their favourite performer, who happens to be the headline act. Barrier Bandits will stay glued to the barrier ALL day; no one is taking their spot, even if they hate all the other artists. "But surely, they must leave to eat or use the toilet?". No, they've come equipped with supplies and a bottle, which they'll not so discreetly use as their personal port-a-loo.
Video Credit: Ray William Juanson via YouTube
Sesh Gremlins have the ‘go hard or go home' attitude, and boy do they go hard. Symptoms may include: abnormal pupils, dancing like a lunatic, swinging jaws, still dancing when the music has stopped and asking strangers to help them find their "friends" who are usually called Molly/Mandy/Kev/Lucy/Tina or Charlie. It's important to keep them hydrated and extra important to take them to medical if something's wrong. Sesh Gremlins are usually harmless and will entertain themselves for hours. They'll return to their human form, after a few hours sleep.
Sometimes people are just really tall, as annoying as that is if you're stuck behind, it can't be helped. This is not who we're talking about. No, we're on about the people with flags, banners, placards, life-sized cardboard cut-outs and giant totems, who wave their object around for the entire set, refusing to lower them. Maybe they spent hours making them, maybe they're using them as a reference point for friends to find them. Whatever their reasons, you'll just wish they'd GET OUT THE WAY! This also applies to the girls who sit on the shoulders of their friend/boyfriend/any stranger they manage to climb.
Unless this is a sold-out festival and it's your friend that's managed to sneak in, these can be somewhat annoying people. Like a broken record, all they can talk about is how they snuck into the festival. They want your praise for jumping the fence or sneaking past security, but all you want is for them to go away. They'll repeatedly tell the story, which gets more and more elaborate each time. Not only are you bored of hearing it, but you're actually a little annoyed that they're enjoying the festival for free.
Festivals are home to the weird and the wonderful, so you’ll usually spot a variety of fancy dress costumes. From homemade light up fairy wings to groups of men on a stag dos. Everything from unicorns and mermaids, to onesies and animals. The creativity and effort that's gone into them can be incredible and act as useful inspiration if you’ve got a costume party coming up. Some will completely amaze you, whilst others you'll wish you could unsee, much like the group of men I saw in mankinis… if you don’t know what that is, look it up, or maybe it’s best if you don’t.
They've been going to festivals since before festivals began. Flower children from the 60s and 70s, they're not ready to give up the game just yet. Despite their subdued and calming aura, you'll be surprised by their energy when the music starts pumping. They are the living embodiment of ‘here for a good time, not a long time.’ Understandably they certainly know a thing or two, so if you get the chance, start a conversation with them. We can guarantee they'll have plenty of wisdom to bestow on you, or at the very least, some unbelievable and hilarious stories.