Did anyone else think that the Just So Festival wasn't great this year?

(16 Posts)
CathyComeCamping Sat 25-Aug-12 17:05:09

OK, so the rain on the second day didn't help, but even on the Saturday we were walking round with a sort of sinking feeling that we'd driven a hundred miles and spent so much money and this was...it.

The site was very hard to find our way around, the maps were useless, all the activities were overcrowded with many having massive, never-moving queues. Then activities overran, so we kept missing the next thing we tried to see... and what we did get to was, frankly, a bit lame. (the levitation thing? DS3 was going..'she's just sitting on that pole, Mummy' hmm) Maybe it was better last year? I decided to go based on OK reviews on mumsnet. But we are fairly seasoned campers and festival goers, and the DC are up for most things, and there's no way I would pay so much to go again. It was probably worth about half what we paid. ah, well, live and learn. At least I got to queue 50 minutes to sit in a fake whale for a bit.

troutpout Sat 25-Aug-12 17:31:58

You are right. I have been every year. This year was however the first year I didn't camp... So my opinion is based only on one day.
But...
It had lost much of the magic. The scale was wrong. The beautiful ' garnishing' of the site which worked so well at the old site was lost at this new big site.The site wasn't half as pretty in general .... But that couldnt be helped maybe what with the rhododendren disease at the last site. Maybe choices were limited.The activities i saw were overcrowded or disappointing. The maps were useless although didn't need them because everything was in a straight line basically wasn't it... In fact the maps just confused the matters! Didn't seem much going on the live stage ? But maybe I missed the good days. Also even less to do for children over about 4? .. ( maybe I missed the good older children stuff though. Where was the beach!? .. That was a marked absence.

On the plus side, I thought the food was better . The indoors eating/ dancing barns were nice. The social worked better.The circus and circus activities was miles better.

Can't think of any other pluses ... Yep you are right... It wasn't fab.

troutpout Sat 25-Aug-12 17:35:58

Lol... Didn't even bother with the whale when I saw the queues.
Ranger Dan in the wild woods was fab... As we're most of the stalls and enthusiastic people in that area. Also the physics people coped well with demands of crowds I thought. Everyone else seemed a bit overwhelmed and a bit short-tempered.

CathyComeCamping Sat 25-Aug-12 20:22:05

Inside the whale was a fairly bonkers woman who told us she'd lost her cat. DC very bemused. We went over to the balancing-rocks-on-top-of-each-other bit after that (No really, kids, you'll love it) and DS got shouted at by the man in charge because he tried to balance some rocks that were quite big, when he should only have been trying to balance small rocks... silly us...

the food was nice, I had some fancy pie thing, but it was qeuey and ££££ and we couldn't find anywhere to sit and eat. I know expensive food is to be expected at a festival, though.

The whole place just seemed to be full of fairly fraught parents and frustrated children. Disappointment Festival.

Caerlaverock Sat 25-Aug-12 20:24:36

Sounds like utter wank

CathyComeCamping Sat 25-Aug-12 20:26:02

Ha Ha, well I was trying to be diplomatic as I know some people on here are fans, but, yeah grin

troutpout Sat 25-Aug-12 20:32:19

Pmsl Caerlaverock
grin

CathyComeCamping Sat 25-Aug-12 20:39:13

I just wish it hadn't been such expensive wank though.

next year we will camp near Alton Towers and have a couple of days there for less.

Did you meet the fairy queen? We waited forty minutes, and she wasn't exactly what you'd call ethereal.

troutpout Sun 26-Aug-12 06:23:50

No didn't bother with her either. Dd is a bit older now though.. And only really cares about ' doing' Not really into fairy queens .... (And she def wouldn't have queued for so long to see her thank gawd)
Saw the queue though ... Mahoosive!
We spent most of the time at the circus or in the woods.
Yes it was too £££ to camp. Sounds like I really didn't miss much then? . I can recommend a day ticket.

nettlemummy Sun 26-Aug-12 09:42:10

Good, it wasn't just us then...
It was great at barns wood. This time it just felt like a cash rinsing exercise. Very disappointing.

.

kateecass Mon 27-Aug-12 23:57:10

Oh dear. We had been upset that we missed it, but shan't be now! Camped last year and loved it despite it being a bit rainy and all the water problems. Maybe a day ticket next year if we're not busy. Don't remember queuing last year. Must have got too popular and sounds like they couldn't cope with the numbers.

ninah Mon 27-Aug-12 23:59:28

the green man was pretty shit too tbh

greygirl Tue 28-Aug-12 21:11:15

I thought there was a lot of 'small capacity' things so there was a fair bit of queueing, fighting for craft materials etc. lantern making ran out of tape at 10.30am on the saturday - how many people had they thought would join in?

And £4 for a programme?

Not as much fun things as last year. Kids loved it all the same though.

DrucillaDemelza Wed 29-Aug-12 15:55:09

Not just us, then. Don't get me started on £4 for a programme, which was essential to make sense of anything.

Most of the activities were about on a level with the sort of kiddies sessions that are put on for free at our local library in the school holidays. Cutting and sticking, making things with twigs. Whoohoo.

went with friends which was embarrassing as I had told them it would be great, and felt responsible for the general awfulness and the waste of money.

Never, never again.

toomuchdisneynotenoughJack Wed 24-Jul-13 19:27:24

I know its very late ( only a year) to answering your initial post but i soo sooo sooo agree with everything everybody has written on here. we went the first two years and completely fell in love with the ethos, atmosphere, layout intrigue and everthing about Just So! then last year ( 3rd visit - and we have to come all the way over from Ireland for it!) we were completely shocked by how bad it was! the whole atmosphere seemed to have changed, it was depressingly bland and there was very little to do for anyone who had kids over about 3 or 4! my two ( 8 and 6) were bored stupid by the second day! It was sooo expensive, queues were mahoosive for everything! my son said the most exiting bit was finding a frog in our tent when we packed it up on the saturday morning ( we left a day and a half early, packed up and drove to a holiday inn in Liverpool for the night, then had an amazingly brilliant day at the FREE science museum in liverpool... IT WAS THAT BAD!!) so this year we havent booked to come to it, but are going to cut our teeth at Camp Bestival ( an even longer drive but should be good).. any advice anybody

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