Out-of-this-world Bestival off to a flier

One of the future-themed sets at Bestival   Picture: Sam Stephenson
One of the future-themed sets at Bestival Picture: Sam Stephenson

Portsmouth Guildhall is looking for new trustees to help take it through its £15m Renaissance project

1
Have your say

THE future has arrived on the Isle of Wight – and its name is Bestival.

Yesterday was the first full day of the annual music festival, now in its 14th year.

Around 50,000 people travelled from Portsmouth and around the UK to Robin Hill Country Park, which was transformed into a sea of stages, tents and flags.

In keeping with the theme, which this year is called The Future, there were several out-of-this-world touches, including a four-tonne robot statue and a new stage called The Spaceport, which features a laser light system and a rocket that stands 20 metres tall.

According to organiser Rob da Bank, the theme represents ‘a luminous dream world of sonic adventuring, spiritual teleportation, everlasting gobstoppers and blissful eternity’.

Among the DJs who christened The Spaceport stage last night was Diplo, who is best known for being one-third of electronic group Major Lazer.

His fellow bandmates joined him in the Stardust Field earlier in the evening as the trio headlined the Main Stage.

The packed crowd got a selection of their biggest hits, including Lean On, Light It Up and Cold Water, the latter being a number-one single in the UK for five weeks.

Preceding them was London rapper Skepta, who brought his signature style of grime music to the festival, and Damian ‘Jr. Gong’ Marley.

The youngest son of reggae icon Bob Marley, he proved the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree as he performed a set of dancehall songs.

Years and Years also appeared on the Main Stage, and started their set with a bang as glitter rained over the crowd when they performed their hit Shine.

Thousands of festival-goers descended on the site on Thursday to pitch up their tents and explore the park, which includes The Big Top venue, the Bollywood Field, the Ambient Forest and the Magic Meadow.

The Big Top was the place to be on Thursday evening as indie electronica band Hot Chip warmed up the crowd, performing their best-known hits, including Ready for the Floor and Over and Over.

The Cure are set to headline the Main Stage tonight and Sean Paul and Wiz Khalifa close the festival tomorrow.