Those lovely people from Glawning had organised their wonderful festival, Glampfest, for May, in the usual venue of Ivy Bank Campsite in the beautiful village of Kirkby Malzeard between Masham* and Ripon and we were really looking forward to it. This was the third time that it had been held and we’ve been to all of them. In fact, it’s become one of the first dates in our calendar every year.
Kirkby Malzeard is about two hours from home and there are two route options for us. The shortest is through Pateley Bridge, a small town in the valley of the River Nidd, but it also involves some serious hills and with the trailer on we prefer to avoid it. Unfortunately, the A59 between Skipton and Harrogate was closed for maintenance work, so we had no choice this year. Absinthe coped well (as did Alison) with the hills and we arrived at Ivy Bank around 2pm. We were camping in the VIP area, which gives you electric hook up, massive pitches and other goodies, including a bottle of fizz and a dedicated assistant to ferry drinks and food to your Glawning.
The forecast for the weekend had been mixed, with some comments on Facebook that suggested some people weren’t going to travel because of 3 days of rain. I’m not sure which forecast they were following because the BBC were predicting some showers but also quite a bit of sunshine and so it proved. Several times over the weekend it looked like rain clouds were heading our way but almost every time they veered off and left us dry. It did rain on Saturday night for a while but we were in the marquee so it really didn’t matter. For most of the rest of the weekend we were able to sit outside our Glawning and wander around the site in the sunshine.
We did have an issue of Friday night as we realised that our hook up wasn’t working. We spoke to Sam, the site owner, on Saturday morning and he managed to get an electrician out to sort the supply and all was well. In fact, electricity to the whole site went down for a while on Saturday when a local managed to bring down an overhead cable just outside the village. Amazingly, repairs were completed within an hour or so, so it didn’t present a problem.
As always, the food vans were fantastic and we had a great meal from the Little Indian and tasty fish and chips from the Frying Stocksman. The Glampfest bar sells drinks at very reasonable prices with beer from the Rudgate Brewery and we visited more than once!
Entertainment was ace as well with lots of different bands throughout the weekend. Past favourites, Barr Lane were there, with some newcomers too, including the Raisers, who morphed from an Irish Band to a Blues outfit over two sessions.
There were also a couple of songs from Bethany Hare, whose charity, Bethany’s Smile was the beneficiary of Glampfest’s generosity this year. Bethany is a very talented young lady and has done so much to raise money to meet the Charity’s aim to raise a minimum of £300,000 to build Smile Cottage – a holiday/respite home, in Yorkshire, where families can go and spend quality time plus build happy memories, when they are faced with the news that their child has a very short life expectancy. Bethany’s Smile also supports families of poorly children in other ways such as providing computer equipment for children to use if they are in hospital long term and unable to go to school, desks for their bedrooms, insurance for ‘final’ holidays and they also look to fulfil other requests for help for children which are made through hospitals, hospices and social workers. A worthwhile cause indeed.
Talking of entertainment, there was a new compere this year – Austin Powers!
There was too much going on to list everything here but suffice to say, you’d never be bored at Glampfest and neither would your kids, as there’s loads of child friendly activities. One of our Glawning neighbours wasn’t overly pleased by the Gong Yoga going on in an adjacent area on Saturday morning but, as usual, we both managed to sleep through the gongs!
Saturday night had live music from a German Oompah band, The Bierkeller Schunklers, which was great fun, especially as we’d brought our Lederhosen and Dirndl.
The band were followed by everyone’s favourite DJ, Rory Hoy. We danced our hearts out until midnight, then made our way back to a toasty Glawning to finish off a few glasses of red. Perfect.
Sunday was a day for chilling, saying goodbye to friends who were leaving and finishing off the last of Rudgate’s beer. We’d booked a few extra days at Ivy Bank and spent the time chilling, walking into the village and enjoying the sunshine. Wandering around the site looking at the Glawnings always produces some ideas for our own too. Another fantastic weekend and one we hope to repeat in 2020.
Things We’ve Learned
Alison will be offended when a 30-something woman wanders over to her on the dance floor and says, “Oh, I’ve been watching you and I love you. I wish my Mum could dance like you at your age”
North Yorkshire on a sunny day will beat any other place into a cocked hat. Actually, North Yorkshire on any day…
The sight of a Giant Schnauzer may have pushed Mrs B over the edge towards a new dog
Spotting a fox in a field beside the M65, watching a Barn Owl flying over the graveyard near the campsite and hearing a Tawny Owl outside the Glawning is enough to keep a wildlife smile on my face for weeks
Having a microwave, kettle and toaster available for campers on site is a great touch from Ivy bank – well done Sam Raw
*pronounced Massam and not Masham
I’ve “borrowed” some photos from others – if I’ve used one of yours and your not happy to have it on here, just let me know and I’ll remove it.