Preview: Beat-Herder 2017
The micro-Glasto of the North is back with a line-up as weird and wonderful as we’ve come to expect from this freeparty turned professional labour of love.
A distinctly friendly festival, with a vast spectrum of ages in attendance, it’s easily one of the most interesting and DIY music festivals in the UK.
On private farmland in Sawley, Lancashire, Beat-Herder is a small-to-medium festival scattered over several stages in woods and fields, with music non-stop from Friday 14th until midnight on Sunday 16th July.
Beat-Herder festival 2017 sees Kelis, Sleaford Mods and Crystal Fighters share a bill with Stereo MCs, Dub Pistols and The Sugarhill Gang in a genre-denying weekend that also includes loads of DJs, an electro-swing band, and whatever the Lancashire Hotpots are.
Stages at the festival are always works of art riffing on a theme, from the slightly intimidating Chinese Fortress to the down and dirty knees-up of the Beat-Herder and District Working Men’s Club.
This year, the laundry-strewn Maison D’Etre house is to be replaced with a secret ‘new stage’, which is so far light on details. But it’s likely to be something very special to stand alongside Trash Manor with its pole dancing robots, and the Illustrious Society’s oak-panelled headquarters where champagne is the only thing on the menu.
Winning the ‘extra activities’ award at the Festival Awards in previous years, Beat-Herder puts place first, and performance second. The on-site swimming pool will be back, if you can find it, and you can wander Quality Street where people dance on cars, get their hair done, and go to the pub in the woods.
One of the most considerate things this festival does is allow you to bring your own booze into the arena, while also keeping drinks prices reasonable once you’re there. This means your ticket is your only real expenditure, something that’s always appreciated with the rising cost of festivals elsewhere.
Tickets are still available at the time of writing, but get yours now to avoid disappointment.