On Friday morning we left Edinburgh at 8.30 am to make our way to Northampton. The A407 is a lovely bit of road.

Part of the A407 scenery. Would be lovely on a trike.

We stopped off at Gretna Green Services where Chris went in search of a pastie and came back grinning like a naughty school boy. He hadn’t found a pastie, but he had found sweets. “Car lollies” he proclaimed proudly.

Then we got to the M6 and the scenery got a bit boring and I started to doze off. The journey was longer than the Google Maps lie of six hours, as bad traffic caused us to travel only 16 miles in nearly two hours. We finally got to Den and Sam’s place in Northampton at just gone 6.00 pm. We had a nice time catching up with them and had an early’ish night for a change.

Saturday morning we left Northampton at 8.30am and got to Henley-On-Thames at not long past 10.00am. This was far too early, so we ate the sandwiches Den made us then queued until midday. We bought a souvenier program for seven quid, then went straight to the only stage and made sure we were near the front for Haircut 100 as they were the third act on. But again we had to wait. The acts didn’t start until 2pm. So Chris went and got some noodles for lunch. Then it rained into our noodle boxes, and during most of he first two acts; The Real Thing and Hue and Cry.

Haircut 100 brought the sun with them, with their songs Blue Hat for a Blue Day and their closing song, Fantastic Day. Apart from a bit of feedback at the beginning of Whistle Down the Wind, their set was lovely.

Nick Heyward on stage with Haircut 100

After Haircut 100 we went for a walk around, away from the main stage, and got some afternoon tea. We could hear the sets by Billy Ocean, Fiction Factory and some of Katrina of Katrina and the Waves. We bought two three-legged stools for five quid each so we could rest our feet, then we went back into the crowd at the main stage half way through Katrina’s set. This time we got about half way through the crowd as I couldn’t face being so hemmed in again.

We got The Original Bucks Fizz, who finished with Making Your Mind Up, and ABC, who really rocked the crowd and finished with The Look Of Love. Then there was Bananarama, who were better than I thought they would be, Howard Jones who was brilliant as always, Village People, who performed with backing tracks instead of the band that others had used. And lastly Holly Johnson who sang some Frankie Goes to Hollywood songs and some of his solo songs. He sang Relax of course, everyone was waiting for it and we thought it was last song. But then he sang The Power Of Love, “a song he’d rather be remembered for”, he said. And it was amazing. Then we got some fireworks to end the shows for the night.

We picked our way through the litter to the food outlets and bought pancakes with sugar and lemon, then spent three-quarters of an hour in the car trying to get out of the field so we could get back to our Travelodge in Maidenhead.

I was impressed not only by the performers today, but the people who made an effort and got dressed up. All that fluro, and all those characters. I suspect many of them were drunk. Personally I had a latte and nothing else, the less time spent in Festival portoloos the better. I only used them twice and both times I was thankful for Royal Britannia serviettes in my pocket because there was no loo paper. I saw one lady pull a loo roll from her bag, no doubt a seasoned festival-goer.

Even clowns get stressed and need a massage

Tomorrow we get to do it all again…

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