General EF News

A Winning Spa

By | General EF News
The Elderflower Fields woodland spa is hidden away in a beautiful, tranquil corner of Pippingford Park. If you are yet to discover this haven of relaxation then head down past the woodland stage at Elderflower Fields next May and take some time out to pamper yourself.


Congratulations to Anna Lane and Nicola Wright our wonderful spa managers who recently won Entrepreneur of the Year award for their Treatment Tents in the Lewes District Business Awards. Now in the 4th year, the awards recognise success, innovation and excellence in the business community

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Young Photographers

By | General EF News

We have a team of fantastic photographers on site each year capturing our wild weekend in the beautiful Pippingford Park. Thank you to all of you who have provided so many wonderful memories of Elderflower Fields over the years.

This year we’re welcoming five talented new young photographers to the team, all on a mission to fulfill briefs of their own making. Meet them here:

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When you go down to the woods

By | General EF News
The woods at Elderflower Fields are places of magic and mystery, adventure and discovery and this year we have created our first Elderflower Fields Art Trail. Discover interactive works of art and have a go activities designed to bring out everyone’s creativity – what ever your age.
So Sussex’s Schools Without Walls team has worked with local schools and artists to create this exciting Art Trail. As well as discovering the interactive art works there are various spots along the trail where you can experiment with materials to create your own work. Drop in sessions with artists will take place over the weekend so pop along and get creative with clay, experiment with colourful threads and wood, or take a seat on the forest floor and have a go at creating something amazing.

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Pre-order the new EF T-shirt!

By | General EF News

We’re very excited to reveal a beautiful new t-shirt for Elderflower Fields this year. The wonderfully talented illustrator, Emma McGowan has created a unique and charming design which will also feature on this year’s festival brochure.

A limited run of t-shirts will be printed, prior to the festival this year by the brilliant team at the Chailey Heritage Enterprise Centre. CHEC was opened in 1995 to provide a professional working environment for young, physically disabled people who had left formal education and experienced problems accessing open employment because of their disability.

T-shirts cost £7.50 if you pre-order before the 7th May. There will also be a limited number of t-shirts available to buy at the festival, from the Info Tent for £10.

To pre-order your t-shirts, visit our ticketing page using the link below or via the menu at the top of the website. Select the number of t-shirts you would like and then click “Order Now”. You will be asked to choose your required size for each t-shirt during the checkout process (please see size guide at the bottom of this page).

Pre-ordered t-shirts will be available to collect from the Info Tent at the festival.

Size (age): XS (3-6) S (7-11) M (12-16) L XL  XXL
Chest (to fit): 30/32 34/36 38/40 42/44  46/48  50/52


By | General EF News

Arriving at a festival can be stressful, especially if you’ve got excited kids after a long journey, all your camping gear and it’s chucking it down… This page explains what to expect when you arrive at Elderflower Fields this year, which will hopefully help you plan to make the arrival experience as smooth as possible.

1) Check where you’re going. The post code for Pippingford is TN22 3HW. There will be yellow AA signs along the A22 as you approach the entrance. Once off the road, stewards will direct you towards the parking.

2) Have your tickets ready. Either printed out, or on your phone. You may be asked to show them as you come into the site.

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What to Bring

By | General EF News

The idea of bringing kids to a festival can seem a little daunting if it’s your first time. We’ve all been there with wet wipe disasters and forgotten flip flops. Here’s our little suggestion for what to bring and what to leave at home, to make your festival experience a success.

Your tent. Unless you’re lucky enough to own a camper van or have treated yourselves to a lovely bell tent or tipi, you’ll need something to sleep in. Plus sleeping bags, pillows and maybe some extra blankets. It’s worth remembering that it can get surprisingly cold in the middle of the night at this time of year, so bring something warm to sleep in.

Clothing. Ah, the great British summer! It will be sunny, hot, showery and cold at various times over the weekend if past experience is anything to go by. Bring waterproofs, wellies, layers and suncream!

Dressing up. Festivals are all about fancy dress and outrageous costumes. Dressing up is strongly encouraged! There is no specific theme this year, but we’d love it if you dress fabulously and colourfully, especially on the Sunday afternoon when we want to see a full fancy dress picnic!…

Food & Drink. We have some of the finest food and drink in the area available on site. There is something for everyone and the prices are quite reasonable. Please see our Food and Drink page for more information. The bars stock a good selection of drinks but make sure you bring a water bottle to refill at the taps or buy a festival bottle from the Info Tent. If you bring snacks for the little ones or a camping stove to cook meals please do your best to minimise waste and do not bring any glass on to site.

Pack light… Our single best tip is to pack light. It’s a five minute walk down from the car park to the main camping field and although there is the Elderflower Express on hand this year (see our guide to arrival here) you’ll still have to trek across the campsite at least a little, so having less definitely makes life easier! If you forget bits and bobs there is always the festival shop which will stock snacks, camping essentials and milk etc.

What not to bring. Finally, please remember, no pets, no sky lanterns or fireworks, no sound systems and no glass…

Feed Bellies Not Bins

By | General EF News

We all love food, YES?

Elderflower Fields are lucky enough to welcome some of the finest local food vendors from Sussex and beyond. Food is a big part of our festival and this year we are introducing an exciting new Campfire Cookout zone featuring workshops and demos for foodies young and old. Our friends from Holmes Wood Play will also be back with their messy Mud Kitchen for our youngest guests, and of course, our So Sussex family taster picnic returns.

But what to do when bellies are full? Food waste at festivals can be a big issue but we’re taking steps to reduce what is thrown away. Our fantastic array of food providers offer child sized portions and we are very careful with what is brought in to Pippingford Park by anyone attending. We encourage you to only bring what you really need to the festival and share any surplus supplies of food or drink with your campsite neighbours rather than sending it to the bin.

Last year The Real Junk Food Project Brighton were on site at the end of the festival and we are proud to say that almost all of the excess food from our catering vendors was redistributed. This year there will also be tables in the campsites and at the entrance to the festival on Monday morning for anything that you really can’t use or take home.

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Access Starts Online

By | General EF News

At Elderflower Fields we try to improve accessibility every year, so that as many families as possible have the opportunity to enjoy our festival. This year, we have signed up to Attitude is Everything’s Access Starts Online campaign, and updated our accessibility information accordingly. We’re proud to support this campaign and the excellent work of Attitude is Everything and we look forward to continuing to improve Elderflower Fields for everyone.

You can find out more about Attitude is everything on their website here:

Happy Christmas!

By | General EF News

Merry Christmas to all our friends and wonderful Elderflower Fields families. We hope to see you all in May back at Pippingford for what we’re sure will be our best festival yet!

And, if you’re still looking for that perfect last minute Christmas gift, there are always EF tickets you know… Here are a couple of downloadable images which you can print out in case you’re planning on gifting festival tickets this year and want something prettier to give.

EF Joins the Energy Revolution!

By | General EF News, Tickets

We are very happy to have signed up this year to the Energy Revolution – a festival industry collaboration that turns your fossil-fuel travel miles into a direct investment in renewable energy. Together we can turn millions of miles of travel into clean energy and turn a problem into a solution. Now, when you purchase your Elderflower Fields tickets, you’ll be given the option to donate a small additional amount which Energy Revolution invests in sustainable energy initiatives to replace dirty, non-renewable forms of energy such as oil with sustainable, clean energy solutions such as wind and solar energy.

At the moment we are only offering a fixed donation option when you buy your festival tickets, but soon we hope to be able to use the Energy Revolution’s travel carbon calculator so you can see exactly what impact your journey has.

If you like, you can use the calculator and donate directly on the Energy Revolution website here.

And for more information on how it works and where the money raised so far has been invested, visit their website, or check out the short video below.

“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.” – Dr. Seuss

Easy Camping Options

By | General EF News

We want your wild adventure with us to be a relaxing and stress free family experience. Each year we look at ways of making camping with kids as easy as possible. The introduction of trolley hire to assist with luggage, improved campsite showers and toilets, and our popular buggy service for tired legs are just a few of these. For those that are looking for an even easier camping experience we also have some premium glamping options available, and new for 2017, pre-erected tents from Tangerine Fields.

Glamping options at Elderflower Fields offer extra comfort and a spacious and relaxed Boutique Village with its own toilets, showers and water point. Boutique guests can take advantage of a dedicated buggy luggage service direct from the car park to their own beautifully furnished tipi or bell tent without the hassle of setting up camp.

Our popular Loveabell tents return after several successful years offering bell tents at Elderflower Fields with prices from £280. These sell out every year so book early to avoid disappointment.

Black Dog Tipis will also return and create a gorgeous tipi village in the exclusive boutique camping area. Sleeping 6 people in comfort and style, prices start from £450 for the weekend.

tipi insideboutique campingbell tent inside

Both options come in a range of furnished and unfurnished packages and provide a luxury, hassle free way of enjoying your adventure in comfort. Guests can enjoy our relaxed boutique corner of the main family camping field.

Tangerine Fields join us for the first time in 2017 and provide simple, pre-erected tents sleeping up to 8 guests. Take the hassle out of pitching up and make the most of your full weekend at the festival. Based in general family camping, Tangerine Fields’ packages allow you to book with large groups of friends if you wish, and arrive any time knowing your tent is already erected.

glamp-tfCamper Vans-640

For guests in motorhomes, campers, caravans, or those who wish to camp with their car or friends, limited pre-bookable live-in vehicle pitches are available for £40.

All premium camping options are limited and have been very popular in past years. All options are likely to sell out.


Into The Trees kids

Into The Trees – WIN our last Elderflower Fields family ticket

By | General EF News

Elderflower Fields 2016 is a sell-out!

Well, almost. We have just one remaining family weekend ticket up for grabs. We’d love to invite you all to our second event Into The Trees this September, and give you the chance to WIN the last Elderflower Fields family ticket too. Everyone who books tickets to Into The Trees before 24th May will be in the draw. An advanced family day ticket is just £22. Don’t worry if you are already booked for Elderflower Fields 2016, if you win you can gift the ticket to a friend or we’ll swap it for Elderflower Fields 2017 instead!

Into The Trees

Into The Trees is a fascinating day of discovery for parents, grandparents and kids of all ages and will take you into the amazing world of trees, woods and forests. One of the south of England’s most amazing landscapes, Pippingford Park offers the rare chance to explore and enjoy protected ancient woodland in the Ashdown Forest.

Six diverse woodland zones full of activities to discover:

Working in the trees – demonstration and craft workshops from skilled blacksmiths, toolmakers, trug and basket makers, and more.

Playing in the trees – explore the tree canopies and play in the branches with climbing and slacklining. Enjoy woodland storytelling and games in the trees.

Art in the trees – create wonderful works of art with your family from wood and browse beautiful work from local artists.

Living in the trees – explore ways in which we can live within the trees. Get mucky with the kids and try mini mud hut building or check out the tree tents or Woodland Hut Company or Mark’s True Tiny House.

Wildlife in the trees – Join some of our brilliant experts from Sussex Wildlife Trust and other partners to learn more about the wonderful wildlife in the woods.

Surviving in the trees – discover ways in which we can survive in the woods with bushcraft skills, foraging and more.

Into The Trees tickets on sale now – Book your ticket before 24th May to enter the prize draw to WIN a family ticket to Elderflower Fields (2016 or 2017) worth £300.

Into The Trees 3rd or 4th September 2016 day ticket prices:

Family from £22

Adult from £8

Child from £5

Under 5s FREE


Into The Trees kids

Term and Conditions: Every email address used to purchase tickets to Into The Trees 2016 before 24th May will automatically be entered into this prize draw (including tickets already purchased). 1 winner will be randomly selected and notified using the email supplied and has 1 week to respond or another winner will be selected. The prize is a family weekend ticket to Elderflower Fields Festival 2016 (2 adults / 2 kids) on 27-30th May. Prize can be gifted but not sold and may also be exchanged for a family ticket to Elderflower Fields 2017 (26-29th May 2017).

Inspired by – Moths by Michael Hall School

By | General EF News, Kids

If you go down to the woods this May you’re in for a big surprise…

The year six students from Michael Hall Steiner school in Forest Row have been working on an exciting art project with Elderflower Fields Festival.

The Steiner curriculum looks at the life cycles of different plants and animals helping children to relate to human reproduction from both a grounded and universal perspective. Elderflower Fields have invited the children to create something for our magical woods at Pippingford Park and the children have enthusiastically responded with huge 3D moths. They have spent time studying the reproductive cycle of the moth and designed and created these wonderful structures from willow and tissue paper as part of an art installation.


The creation of these sculptural forms also fulfils the 12 yr-olds’ developing ability for design. They have studied the different forms of moths and worked out how to transform the precise geometrical forms and colours of the images of real moths into sculptural forms that will not only look stunning but withstand the weather.


The students have successfully combined accurate design, teamwork and biology into one activity that will be displayed for us all to enjoy and perhaps inspire more of us to get outside and be creative. Thank you to all the students and teachers involved – we can’t wait to see the moths in flight!

EF2016 Site Map

By | General EF News

Here is our Elderflower Fields 2016 site plan. Check it out & get excited! Not long to go now…

EF2016 Site Plan-a

Click the image to download a PDF version of the site map.

Boutique Camping Set to Sell Out

By | General EF News

We understand not everyone loves the sheer joy of a completely wild time sleeping on the floor. The great British weather can fill some parents with dread at the thought of sleeping under a sheet of thin nylon. Glamping options at Elderflower Fields offer a little bit of extra comfort.

New for 2016, Black Dog Tipis will create our first Tipi village in our exclusive glamping area. Sleeping 6 people in comfort and style, prices start from £450 for the weekend.

Our popular Loveabell tents return after several successful years offering bell tents at Elderflower Fields but are unfortunately already sold out.

tipi insideboutique campingbell tent inside

Both options come in a range of furnished and unfurnished packages and provide a luxury, hassle free way of enjoying our 5th birthday in style. Guests can enjoy our relaxed boutique corner of the main family camping field. The glamping area offers its own toilets, showers and water point with a dedicated buggy service direct from the car park to the boutique area to carry your luggage.

If canvas in any form still fills you with fear, then our premium camping pitches offer space for you to pitch up in motorhomes, caravans or anything you like, provided it fits within your spacious 6×9 meter space. Pitches can be booked here.

Glamping has been very popular in past years and all options are likely to sell out very soon.


A taste of Sussex

By | General EF News

Elderflower Fields is all about trying new things. After overwhelmingly positive feedback our So Sussex Sunday taster picnic is back. It’s a chance to sample new food and introduce kids to some delicious local produce, but above all, a chance to meet new friends and come together as a community.

All our activities at Elderflower Fields encourage families to join in and give things a go. Seeing children enjoy new experiences and become part of our magical community is what makes our event so special for us.  The family picnic experience invites you to collect a picnic bag and enjoy the delights inside with a group of 12 festival guests.


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Real Junk Food Project Brighton

Welcome The Real Junk Food Project Brighton

By | General EF News

The Real Junk Food Project Brighton intercept food destined for landfill, and this May we are super excited to welcome them to Pippingford Park to help us reduce our waste. With all the delicious grub on offer at Elderflower Fields, we have always been keen not to waste a single mouthful. Unfortunately, as with most outdoor events, food waste is something we will never be able to eliminate entirely.

We have some of the finest local food vendors joining us this year and The Real Junk Food Project will be on site to collect anything that isn’t used at the end of the weekend to feed people who need it at one of their weekly pop-up Junk Food Cafes in the city of Brighton. The revolutionary ‘pay as you feel’ concept encourages people to think about what their plate of food means to them, if they can’t afford to pay money, then they may want to wash up, weigh some intercepted food, or spread the word about the project. Food is a basic amenity that should be available to EVERYONE regardless of financial status and the project provides healthy meals, not just for homeless people, but low-income families, students and anyone struggling financially.

hollingbean outside

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Relax in our Woodland Spa

By | General EF News

Tucked away in a peaceful corner of the site you’ll discover the Green People Woodland Spa which has been designed to help you fully relax into the festival. A haven of tranquility, the spa offers various 60 minute treatments for £45.
Bookings are now available for sessions starting on Friday at 6pm through till 11am on Monday morning.

Our fantastic team of fully qualified & highly professional local therapists offer a wide range of spa treatments to suit your needs. You will be looked after by the Green People team who we are hugely grateful to for their continued support. Green People are the UK’s most loved natural and organic skin care brand. They offer a range of skin products for all the family and support our therapists with treatments.

And for complete peace of mind, why not book the children into one of our supervised Sports and Arts camps whilst you’re visiting the spa? Head to the activity booking page for more info.

Click here to visit the Woodland spa page for more info and to book


UK Festival Awards Nominations

By | General EF News

We’re thrilled to announce that Elderflower Fields has been nominated for Best Family Festival at the 2015 Uk Festival Awards. We’re also nominated in the Best Small Festival, Grassroots Festival Award and Best Toilets categories!

It’s amazing to be mentioned in the same breath as some of the much bigger and established festivals, so we’re smitten just to be nominated. But, if you could take a few minutes to vote for us, it would be the absolute world! To entice you a little, when you vote you can opt to be entered into a draw to win tickets to all the winning festivals next year!

To vote, head over to the Festival Awards site and click the “vote now” button.

13 Marvellous Magical Things Not To Miss

By | General EF News, Kids

With only a couple of weeks to go we thought we’d let you know about just a few of the magical moments you can enjoy at this year’s Elderflower Fields.

1. Make Believe – Transport the kids to another world with one of our captivating storytellers. Discover the enchanting storytelling area in the woods and listen to tales from near and far. Folk tales and fairy tales, myths and legends, or take a nice little holiday with a snail and find out where they go when the sun shines.

2. Mini Beasts – Join Sussex Wildlife Trust and discover the hidden beasts around Pippingford Park. Take a nightjar walk with our experts or try and spot of orienteering with your family to find some of the hidden gems in Ashdown Forest.

3. Masquerade and Moustaches – Last year we had bears in the woods, this year we are going a little more up market. Saturday night we invite you to dress in your finest attire and join us at the cocktail bar for a martini or two. Pop in to the craft tent early evening to work on a moustache and fluff your feathers and we may even have a prize or two for the dandiest. (Bears are also welcome too)

4. Mr B The Gentleman Rhymer – A legend of chap hop, this guy is guaranteed to get everyone bopping to his cheeky little ditties. Get down to the main stage on Saturday for some of England’s finest.

5. Mouth-watering Morsels – The famous chocolate cakes are back. Don’t miss the chance to sample some of the finest local tasters at the So Sussex Sunday picnic. Join us on Dragon Fly Hill with a blanket and your smiling faces. Make some new friends, pick up a picnic, and enjoy.

6. Mud Hut Building – Get stuck in and muddy. We’ll be building a traditional mud hut over the weekend. Come and get messy!

7. Mini Musicians – Elderflower Fields is proud to work with some amazing organisations providing opportunities for kids to learn about instruments in our Youth Music Zone. Try a music master-classes with special guests or even join the BBC 10 Pieces performance on the main stage on Sunday.

8. Move the Tale – Make sure your little movers make it down to this dance and story workshop. Movement Warriors are back and this year in collaboration with Ghislaine from Twisting the Tale to bring kids these exciting new sessions.

9. Mr Marvel – Back with his mind-blowing magic, Mr Marvel will delight the little ones. Don’t miss it.

10. Maleficent – Just one of our magical family movies on show in the Elderflower Fields cinema this year.

11. Magical Memories – Elderflower Fields has provided some truly magical moments for us over the years. Some of those most memorable have been performed on our unique and intimate woodland stage. Take an adventure in to the deep and see what you discover.

12. Me Time – Take advantage of one of our brilliant prebookable sports activities for your kids while you enjoy some me time. Perhaps time for a Woodland Spa treatment or a visit to our wood fired hot tubs.

13. Making Monsters – under 6’s and their siblings can enjoy one of our Arts Camp sessions with author Leigh Hodgkinson and her new Monster Snorey Book, then make their own monsters. On Sunday we’ll be making big monster costumes too.

There’s plenty more amazing things on offer this year. We hope you enjoy discovering some of the hidden gems on your magical journey at Elderflower Fields.

5 weeks to go, 5 great reasons to join us in the sunshine…

By | Competition, General EF News

1: The Picnic

The So Sussex Sunday picnic has become something of our trademark and is one of the highlights of the weekend. It’s the perfect way to spend an afternoon with friends and family (or even strangers) and it’s all included in your ticket. We are pretty sure Elderflower Fields is the only festival in the world to supply every guest with a free shared picnic filled with delicious tasters of local produce. And then there’s the legendary chocolate cake…

2: The Activities

Elderflower Fields has more free activities on offer per child that any other festival we know. All run by a dedicated team of professional organisations providing kids with the opportunity to discover new skills and have fun. Rafting, mud hut building, music masterclasses, parkour, science, disc golf, night walks, slack-lining, bush craft skills, art workshops, sports camp, kayaking, orienteering, pond dipping, drama workshops, climbing wall and more. All FREE with your ticket.

3: Spa and Hot Tubs

The Green People Woodland Spa is now taking bookings for luxurious festival pampering. You can also prebook supervised sports or arts camp session so that the kids are taken care of while you relax. And of course the Double Decker Hot Tub Bus is back too!

Visit our Facebook page to enter our current hot tub competition…

4: The Music

Gypsy, folk, blues, rock, cajun, swing, dance and classical. We’re super excited about the line up this year and think we have something for everyone.

We also welcome a unique performance being curated on site by East Sussex Music Service as part of the BBC Ten Pieces, as well as the winners of our Youth Music Competition.

5: Food and Drink

We have some of the finest local food providers at Elderflower Fields this year. Some regular favourites and a few new surprises to enjoy. All supplying affordable high quality meals. We’ve worked hard with suppliers to ensure all diets are catered for – especially the kids.

The cocktail bar will be back with a new stage and late music for the night owls and two further bars will be serving up craft beers, local ales, ciders and more…

The Hot Tub Bus Returns

By | General EF News


Start your festival in style or perhaps enjoy a mid-way recharge as you bathe in the hot tubs on the top deck with a complimentary glass of fizz, taking in the stunning views over the Ashdown Forest. Relax with a steaming shower or sauna on the lower deck before heading back to the main stage…

For more information, see the hot tubs page here

Inspired by Elderflower #2

By | General EF News

The second of our Inspired by Elderflower stories from Jo, who was inspired to start her own festival!

“Hello! My name is Jo and I am part of a small team that organises a festival called The Be Free Festival based on the edge of Epping Forest in Essex. I am going to tell you how Elderflower Fields Festival 2012 inspired our festival….

In 2014 we ran the first Be Free Festival. It is a beautiful space for people with learning disabilities, their family, friends and supporter workers to explore, be adventurous, be still, be brave and to face fears, to be free and equal, be creative, laugh and make connections with people.

It was the idea of Sally, the Managing Director of Paradigm (an organisation that campaigns for equality for people with learning disabilities and the right to an ‘ordinary life’) as a way to challenge how people with learning disabilities too often get ‘wrapped in cotton wool’ and just don’t get the freedom to experience ordinary moments or make basic choices that many others can. It challenges people to look at what good support is and it gives people a chance to experience going to a festival and try new things from lighting their first camp fire to staying in a tent for the first time.

At Be Free people get a chance to chill by open fires roasting marshmallows, take moonlit walks, watch a late night movie, camp in bell tents (often for the first time) or try all sorts of adventure challenges like zip wires and 3G swings. There is graffiti in the woods and we have a Big Picnic where people have to make a group of ten, are given their picnic bag to go off to eat together, people can try their hand at DJing with Nick Carling’s ‘Kiss My Disco’, they can try the silent disco and listen to bands. Can you spot the connection now?  Yep! Many elements inspired by the lovely Elderflower Fields Festival!

You see Elderflower Festival 2012 was the first festival I ever went to (with my family) and we just loved it. We loved the warm welcome, the woodland paths lit with fairy-lights, the random sofa and room in the middle of the woods, gathering people together in groups of ten to have a gorgeous picnic of local food, the skate park in the woods for kids, the fun silent disco, the yummy food stalls and the chance my kids had to light camp fires…it was quite magical.

It is this experience that I draw on when I help to shape The Be Free Festival 2015 with my lovely colleagues (I’m on the right, with Lore and Sally to my left).

Be Free Team

Everyone has a right to these magical experiences. So thank you Elderflower Fields for inspiring me, for inspiring my children and for inspiring so many elements of The Be Free Festival. Here’s to Being Free in 2015 and Elderflower Fields Festival 2015. Here’s to the beautiful moments in life that we are lucky to have!”

If you or your kids have a story you’d like to share about what has inspired you at Elderflower Fields in the past, please get in touch here.