DD 16 wants to go to Reading Festival after GCSE's

(42 Posts)
bevelino Sun 12-Jan-14 23:49:16

Is it ok to let dd aged 16 go to Reading Festival unaccompanied with 20 school friends this year? Siblings aged 13 also want to go but have said no to them.

phoolani Sun 12-Jan-14 23:51:45

I was 16 when I first went...or maybe 17? Had a whale of a time. Really depends on your dd and what you think she might get up to.

NigellasDealer Greece Sun 12-Jan-14 23:51:56

well i suppose you would worry but if she is with such a large group they will look after each other - so yes i think it would be OK - even though you might not sleep well all weekend.....

SuzanneUK Mon 13-Jan-14 00:20:14

If it's sex you're worrying about, you should bear in mind it's 2014 and she's 16 years old so, if boys find her attractive, there's no point closing the stable door for a weekend now. It's a pound to a penny that particular horse bolted a long time ago.

hiphipreplacement Mon 13-Jan-14 00:58:44

I was 16 when I went. Was great fun. And I was reasonably well behaved! grin

Selks Mon 13-Jan-14 01:01:20

Age 16 yes, 13 no. Mine went to Leeds fest at age 16 and had a great time.

thecatfromjapan Mon 13-Jan-14 01:04:58

Hello Bevelino. My ds is going. Perhaps we should p.m.? He's 16, going with friends (yet to be announced). I'm terrified. smile

NatashaBee Mon 13-Jan-14 01:08:41

I would let her. Make sure she has a cheap mobile so it doesn't matter if she loses it, make sure she puts your number in a couple of other friends phones as a backup. Make sure she packs a wind up phone charger, baby wipes and sunscreen, and a padlock for her tent.

ancientandmodern Mon 13-Jan-14 09:15:50

Completely agree with advice from NatashaBee. Also good to remind her that phone coverage can be patchy, so sensible plan is to have a time/meeting point pre-arranged if people get lost and can't make contact. And empty plastic water bottle - taps to fill up on site and bottled water v expensive (can be hot in August!)

Would also say DS has been to Reading (and Glastonbury) several times, but says he found last Reading trip not so great, as lot of setting fire to tents (!?) at the end, plus petty thieving (had his wallet pinched) Not a reason to pull out of going, but wise to emphasise need to stay with friends and take sensible precautions.

akachan Mon 13-Jan-14 12:23:07

I went when I was 14 and had a brilliant time and didn't get into any trouble! She'll have a great time.

EasterHoliday Mon 13-Jan-14 12:27:09

You might be interested to know that Carling no longer sponsor Reading / Leeds because the average age of attendees has dropped so significantly that they'd have issues with Portman Group advisory / wrong target audience for alcohol. The 16 yr old will have a rubbish time having to babysit a 13 year old.
If the 16 year old works particularly hard in exams, you could always throw in a room at the Renaissance / George hotel so you know where they are... (tho' they get booked out very early for the people who go on work tabs, like the music journos. Which also means that the bar is very "lively" after the festival shuts)

bevelino Tue 14-Jan-14 00:45:08

Thank you for all your messages of support. I have said yes to dd and have a very happy, smiley good natured teen on my hands this evening promising to do chores and all kinds to pay me back for the cost of the ticket. ancientandmodern I nearly had a heart attack when I read your post about tents being torched but am sure she'll be ok in a huge group.

Catfromjapan I will pm you!

NatashaBee Tue 14-Jan-14 00:58:31

I wouldn't worry about the tent torching. I think anything like that tends to happen as people pack up and leave the campsite on the last morning, I would just make sure they get up and packed up and gone early - if only because the trains will be rammed.

All three of mine went at that age... and all survivedsmile DD1 is nearly 22 and has been every year since GCSEs and loves it. Bad points.. she got swine flu the first time and came home very ill indeed. She once found a naked drunk lad in her sleeping bag (and booted him out!) and last year she and her sister were in the official video footage on some blokes' shoulders in just shorts and bras..and a few moments later someone reached up and unclipped DD2's bra..which being a 28J cup (on a tiny frame) was..um.. notable! grin

They are very strict about no alcohol for under 18s (tho of course some will get hold of it) and overall I think it's a fab experience for them. The toilets are vile.. but if they can not wee til the arena ones open in the morning they are much better apparently! Mine come back like hobos, filthy, exhausted and happy!

FunnysInLaJardin Tue 14-Jan-14 22:49:00

I was 16 when I first went in <ahem> 1987. Twas fab and no doubt a bit more rule free in those days

Claybury Wed 15-Jan-14 13:58:13

Noone worried about drugs at festivals ?

Custardo Wed 15-Jan-14 13:59:17

i went a couple of years ago - it was swarming with post GCSE twats young people

IHatePopUpTents Wed 15-Jan-14 14:07:32

I think she would enjoy it, but I went two years ago and the shear number of drugs around made me a bit uneasy, aged 20 and I would DEFF pick her up after the last performance on Sunday. Sunday night is when twats start burning tents, and generally being reckless. I ended up at the walk in center on the Monday morning as someone had thrown a tent pole through our tent and it whacked me on the head..

mummytime Belgium Wed 15-Jan-14 14:14:47

If teens want to use drugs they will be able to get them in any town or and school in the country.
The geeky boy my DS sat next to in Physics disappeared one day; even the teacher was shocked he had been excluded for drug dealing.

falaaalaaa Wed 15-Jan-14 14:21:54

Thanks for all the advice! My dc also wants to go.

Sounds like it's become the thing to do after GCSEs. Was it the same last year, or is it a new post-GCSE thing?

ancientandmodern Wed 15-Jan-14 15:46:09

No, not new - they all go post GCSE, which reminds me of another tip - for those whose DC will be going into school to collect results and then going straight on to Reading with mates, give them an SAE so they can post results info home, rather than losing vital bit of paper in the mud on the campsite. (

tinytalker Wed 15-Jan-14 20:40:10

Am I the only mum here who would never let my 16yr old CHILD go to a festival?! I trust her but she is a very petite attractive & unworldly little thing and I do not trust the people there to not take advantage of her, ply her with drink/drugs etc.
Medusa's, IHatePopUpTents stories (above) make me feel well justified in this view.
Maybe I'm just a mean mum but at least she'll be safe!

HerrenaHarridan Wed 15-Jan-14 20:54:43

Tinytalker.

That kind of attitude will get you a 16yo adult who moves out grin

IHatePopUpTents Wed 15-Jan-14 22:21:15

tiny tbh I wouldn't let my children go either, it was petrifying and I was with a massive group of 25 and over half were men. I've never been back, my brother went the same year as me aged 19 and he came to find me not to check up on me because he was scared..
I hope everything goes well for those who are going, just please please please brief them on aspects mentioned here..

Tiny talker... mine aren't idiots ..but they are both petite attractive, unworldly girls from our PM's constituency, blondes... not beer swilling oiks.
There are bad people everywhere in the world, there are probably drugs too.. but it doesn't mean all kids are 'taken advantage of'... most will only do things THEY want to!

When will you 'let' her (should she so wish!) At 17, 18 when she is has left home for uni? The vast majority really do go for the music and the mud!!
Mine have managed to be unscarred from their yearly trip and are now both at uni (one med student, one nurse)

Having said that their brother went at 17 and hated the tent life and mud.. but then again he WAS an idiot and insisted on going only 10 days after having his appendix removed... !

I WAS worried when DD1 first went, but she saved for it herself, and went with a small group of close friends and they had fun.

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