Boomtown: what’s going down at Chapter 10

18th June 2018 Off By

In less than eight short weeks, Boomtown Chapter 10 will be with us. In the resale earlier this month, standard weekend tickets sold out in minutes. Chapter 10 tickets originally sold out way back in February.

Way back in 2009, Boomtown Chapter 1 was underway. With a capacity of just 1,000 and handwritten tickets produced around a kitchen table, the Fair was born

Today, Boomtown Fair is firmly established as one of the UK’s major festivals. Chapter 10 is the third chapter to boast a 60,000 capacity, and having sold out nearly six months prior to the event, its exponential growth is now bursting at the seams. 

Whilst plans to increase Chapter 10’s capacity to 80,000 were dropped back in January amid traffic concerns, it stands to reason to expect another increase sometime in the next few years. If you’ve missed out on one of this year’s 60,000 tickets, you could still join the 12,000-strong crew that keep the Fair running smoothly.

Boomtown Sunrise
Image credit: Paul Whitley

Boomtown has to be the most hyped festival this summer. It’s not just because it has the best line-up in the country. A line-up with thousands of acts spanning hundreds of unique and individual stages, street, and theatre venues. A line-up comprised of 14 different districts, each with their own distinct vibe and dedicated line-up posters. Almost mini-festivals in their own right, the immersive districts have been curated by hundreds of independent creative crews from across the globe over the last decade.

From reggae-dub to doom metal to grime, the depth of Boomtown’s line-up is rivalled only by Glastonbury. Oh, and Gorillaz and Limp Bizkit are headlining this year. Go read our Chapter 10 line-up preview if you haven’t already, but yeah, that’s just one of the reasons the Fair is the most hyped festival this summer.

If you’ve never been to Boomtown before, if you’ve never been to Glasto before, if your festival history comprises entirely of Leeds, Reading, or V Fest, then you’re in for an absolute treat.

Boomtown tears up what many know as a festival: a bland arena with a main stage plastered in corporate logos accompanied by a couple of tents and some traders. There’s not a hint of anything so generic at Boomtown, with unmatched attention-to-detail making each district a more immersive experience than a quick dip in a shark cage. 

And don’t try to figure out which is the Fair’s main stage, you’ll get a headache.

Aside from the awesome line-up and the incredible spectacle that is Boomtown Fair, there’s loads else going on at Chapter 10 that’s worth getting excited about.

Wednesday entry

Click here to see the full Wednesday line-up poster in our Boomtown district gallery!

For the first time, Boomtown has been granted permission to open its doors from Wednesday. The local authorities gave the go ahead back in May in the hope that spreading arrivals over an extra day will alleviate traffic congestion.

To access the festival on Wednesday you must travel via a sustainable method of transport. That means three or more per car, coach, or a shuttle bus from the train station.

Boomtown Springs

Boomtown Springs 2018 Line-up

Boomtown Springs is dubbed ‘utopia in suburbia’ and is an all new theatrical campsite, or ‘residential quarter’, situated centrally within the Fair. Boomtown Springs promises an ‘immersive theatrical experience’ curated by Bearded Kitten, the masterminds behind The Bank, The Opera House, and The Gentleman’s Club in previous chapters.

Springs residents can bring their own tent, or pay extra for pre-pitched accommodation. They’ll get free Wednesday early entry, priority parking, and a dedicated entrance to the Fair. They’ll also get all the usual posh camping perks, like nice showers, phone charging, and decent toilets throughout the Fair. 

Two more things: exclusive Boomtown Springs ‘mansion’ and ‘pool’ parties, and £100 worth of drinks at the secret bars hidden inside the festival.

Oh, and the best bit? Boomtown might be sold out, but Boomtown Springs packages are still available from the official website. As are Bell tents, Podpads, and almost half a dozen other luxury options.

Image credit: Scott Salt

The most sustainable Boomtown yet

Boomtown’s Sustainability Pledge was published earlier this month, weeks after signing the Association of Independent Festival’s #DrasticOnPlastic pledge. 

This means Boomtown are one of over 60 independent festivals set to eliminate single-use plastic from their event by 2021. The pledge hit headlines after TheFestivals revealed the ban will cover cosmetic glitter, and force traders to supply biodegradable alternatives. Boomtown have already banned plastic straws and serve ware.

Chapter 10’s sustainability initiatives include a partnership with the South Downs National Park to minimise the impact on the land, such as protecting rare plants and species. All of the Fair’s festoon lighting is LED, and 95% of the toilets are compost toilets.

They’ve also reduced the price of coach tickets, and are organising ‘The Big Bristol to Boomtown Bike Ride’ in partnership with Red Fox Cycling.

The trailer

Have you seen the trailer for Chapter 10 yet? Stop now and watch it. 

What other festival has a trailer that gets you as psyched as that? None, I expect. I doubt there’s a movie trailer that’ll give you goosebumps in quite the same way.

It’s sold out, but don’t let that stop you

The resale has been and gone, and standard tickets are again completely sold out. Wednesday entry packages have gone too.

Fortunately, there’s still loads of other ways you can experience Chapter 10 for yourself. It could even be free if you volunteer.

  • Buy a coach package ticket
    Boomtown tickets including coach travel are still available from loads of cities, and Wednesday early entry is available too.
  • Go by train
    Boomtown tickets including a shuttle bus from Winchester Train Station are still available, be that with Wednesday entry or without.
  • Go luxury
    The immersive, theatrical camping experience that is Boomtown Springs is still available. As are loads of other incredible, VIP accommodation options across the Fair. Check them out.
  • Volunteer
    If you don’t fancy paying for posh camping, volunteering lets you experience the Fair for free, whilst getting access to your own showers and toilets. You’ll typically work three 8 hour shifts across the weekend. Organisations such as Oxfam and myCause are detailed in our free Boomtown tickets guide. Alternatively, you can volunteer with Boomtown directly.

Gorillaz are headlining… exclusively

I thought I’d said enough about the line-up, but this deserves another mention.

Boomtown Chapter 10 is Gorillaz only British festival appearance this summer. They’re totally exclusive to the Fair.

And they’re less than two months away.

Main image credit: Sam Neill

TheFestivals Editor ● The Tab Contributor ● University of Manchester Politics Postgrad ● Bangor University School of Computer Science graduate ●  Blog ● One of 1500+ Chester FC owners

sam@thefestivals.uk