Wickham Festival revellers party as music plays on

Wickham Festival revellers (left to right) Clare Cook, Pam Chapman, Sharon Hobbs, and Mark Hutton. ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (142364-8034)

Wickham Festival revellers (left to right) Clare Cook, Pam Chapman, Sharon Hobbs, and Mark Hutton. ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (142364-8034)

Proud members of the ship's company watch as the giant warship inches her way to sea for the first time. From left, Able Seaman (AB) Natasha Elford, AB Layton Toward and AB Richard Mead

HMS Queen Elizabeth begins the long voyage to Portsmouth

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REVELLERS enjoyed bands performing in the sunshine at the second day of the Wickham Festival.

People at the event were listening to live acts in the dry after a series of downpours had turned the site into a muddy quagmire on Thursday.

But festival organisers saved the day yesterday by covering the outside area with straw.

Stuart Houghton, 44, from Wickham, was with his wife Zoe, 35, son Harry, three, and five-month-old baby Theo.

They took the chance to see live bands on their doorstep.

Stuart said: ‘It’s the first year I’ve been – Zoe’s been before.

‘It’s absolutely fantastic – James Blunt gave Wickham a name-check.

‘I though that was brilliant. That made it an intimate family thing – that’s what I love about this place. We’ve got a five-month-old and three-year-old son – it’s been great to bring them along.’

He added he plans to come back next year.

His wife Zoe said there were plenty of things for the family to do besides the music.

‘It’s the range of activities for all ages,’ she added.

As reported, the sounds of James Blunt’s ballads filled the air on Thursday night as he headlined the main stage.

And last night 90s indie stars the Lightning Seeds took top billing in the big top.

Smaller local bands have also had a look in on a second stage.

Rosie and Tom Clay, both 57, travelled from Salisbury and went along to the festival, held off Blind Lane.

Rosie said: ‘I’m not a festival-goer. It’s been pretty extraordinary. It’s fun – it’s a very nice atmosphere.

‘There’s a lot of people evidently of a certain age letting their hair down and having a good time.’

The festival runs into the night from midday today and Sunday.

n Full coverage and pictures from the Wickham Festival in The News on Monday

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