Springing up annually like a wildflower in the Cumbrian meadows, Solfest has evolved continually since its inception in 2003, transitioning from a local shindig, into one of the best-loved of the UK's independent festivals.
Run by a dedicated team and a small army of volunteers, Solfest has stayed true to its anti-corporate roots. This means that art and decor take the place of ubiquitous advertising and the international big names on the main stage don't drown out the voices of the hidden gems.
We're all about eclecticism and although nothing shouts that louder than our handpicked line-ups, spanning genres and eras of music, that most certainly isn't where it stops. A broad group of very talented people come together each year at Solfest, to create an immersive environment with everything from a creative kid's area, to an array of interactive site art and even a Healing Garden where you can meditate, do some Yoga or participate in a Shamanic ritual!
Solfest is founded on the idea that what truly makes a festival great is the crowd... That's right, YOU. You are our driving force and over the years we've been proud to see that the spirit of inclusion we strive for has not been lost to the Solfest community. Punks and ravers, grannies and toddlers, whoever you are or wherever you're from, Solfest has something for you. We want you to know that you own Solfest, whether you're a musician looking to play, a performer looking to show off your skills, an artist keen to help make the space come alive or you're simply looking for somewhere to dance, your collaboration defines the festival and we love you for it.
For this event, we're using the Skiddle Access Scheme by offering Personal Assistant tickets for customers who need to be accompanied. A Personal Assistant ticket is to be offered for free or discounted when somebody with a disability requires a carer to be in attendance with them. To automatically be eligible, please provide a copy of one of the following pieces of the documentation listed below.
>Front page of DLA / PIP (no specific rate)
>Front page of Attendance Allowance letter (no specific rate)
>Evidence that registered severely sight impaired (blind)
>Recognised Assistance Dog ID card
>Credability's Access Card
If this applies to you then, please book the tickets you require (not including the Personal Assistant ticket) and contact the Skiddle Customer Care team with your documentation along with your 16-digit order reference number by submitting a support request here: https://help.skiddle.com/hc/en-us/requests/new
What time does the festival start?
The campsites will open at 9 am and close at 8 pm on Thursday to those of you with a Thursday Camping Ticket. The campsites will reopen on Friday at 9 am. The main festival arena opens at 1 pm on Friday.
Can I pay at the gate?
Tickets will be available at the gate as long as we don't sell out in advance.
Will there be a cash machine on the festival site?
No. But a free bus runs to Aspatria and Silloth over the weekend if you need to withdraw extra cash. The bar will have contactless cashpoints this year.
Is there an online program showing which acts are on when?
No. We want you to enjoy the whole of the Solfest experience which is why we don't publish our programme of events prior to the festival starting. We'll tell you who is performing but never when.
Will you have programs/timetables for the weekend?
Yes. Programmes will be available at the information area on-site over the weekend. We don't publish information in advance, mostly because we'd like people to come for the whole weekend, not just one band. But, also, owing to the nature of the event, timings are subject to a bit of change, so we leave the publishing to as late as possible.
What time is 'my favourite band' playing?
Because we want people to come and enjoy the whole festival experience and not just cherry-pick one band, we do not release the times and days acts will perform until the start of the festival. Our Programme Policy has more details.
Can I arrive on Thursday?
Yes, but adults (16+) will need to purchase advance Thursday Camping tickets. This is a £15 supplement which must be purchased at the same time as your tickets. Anyone under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult with a valid ticket and a Thursday camping pass. You must get to the site between 9 am and 8 pm on Thursday because moving vehicles around the camping areas as it gets dark poses a significant safety risk. The gates will be closed at 8 pm on Thursday and reopen on Friday at 9 am. The main arenas will open at noon on Friday.
What time do I have to be off-site at the end of the festival?
You must be off-site by sunset on the Monday Bank Holiday.
Is there somewhere I can park so that I can leave the site early?
If you need to get your car off-site during the weekend, please explain to the stewards, you'll need to leave your car in day parking, as we don't allow any vehicle movements on the campsites over the weekend wherever possible.
Is the festival family-friendly?
Yes. We pride ourselves on having something for everyone, from workshops and events in the Healing Garden to activities in the Children's Arena, and a vast array of music and performance spaces around the site. We want grans, granddads, brothers, sisters, mums, dads, aunts and uncles to join in the fun and have a brilliant time together.
Can I bring my dog?
No. At the request of the landowner, pets are not permitted for safety reasons.
We recommend local boarding kennels, Grass Roots Kennels who offer a great service for our festival-goers dogs.
Can I bring or buy alcohol?
Yes, but it's the same at Solfest as anywhere else. We allow only open cans & cups into the arena. We would ask that you do not bring glass into the arena and that you use our recycling points when you're finished. Under-age drinking is not permitted. Your adult ticket/wristband has nothing to do with the sale of alcohol or any other licensed products. The law is the law. If you are asked for ID and you do not have any, you will not be served alcohol.
Can I charge my mobile phone on-site?
Yes. You can charge your phone in the Information Tent just inside the main entrance to the arena, ask a steward for directions.
I'm disabled, what help is there?
There will be as much assistance as we can provide on a case-by-case basis. There is no concession for a disabled person but you may bring a carer free of charge. Please purchase the tickets you require (adult, young persons, children and Thursday camping) from Skiddle and upload the relevant forms to them. We can provide electric hookups for powered wheelchairs but please contact us in advance to arrange this, or for more information.
Does the ticket price include camping?
Yes. Friday, Saturday and Sunday night camping is included in the ticket price. You can arrive on Thursday if you add one Thursday Camping supplement per adult to your order.
Is there a family camping area?
Yes. we have a family campsite, close to the kids' arena and designed for families.
Is there a quiet camping area?
Yes. Townside (Quiet Camping) is the place to go if you want to sleep when you return to your camp, but remember wherever you are camped, it is unreasonable to expect absolute silence all night -- it is a music festival after all!
Can I bring my campervan/caravan/trailer tent?
Yes. We do allow live-in vehicles, vans, caravans, campervans, motor-homes and trailer tents. There's a small extra charge for your live-in vehicle, van, caravan, campervan, motor-home or trailer tent. We would always encourage you to share transport where possible (for the environment's sake), arrive early to get a decent spot and travel in convoy to help reduce traffic disruption in the local area. We can't guarantee a level pitch and we do not provide electric hookups. If you intend to arrive on Thursday, you will need one additional Thursday camping ticket for each adult, as well as the vehicle pass.
Does it cost more for a campervan/caravan/trailer tent?
Yes, to encourage people to use public transport wherever possible there's a small additional fee per vehicle.
Can I camp with my friends?
Yes, but we cannot guarantee it, so it's best to arrive early and as a group. We do not allow people to reserve, hold, mark, cordon off or otherwise claim a specific camping space so please all arrive together to avoid disappointment.
Can I park where I camp?
Due to changes in licensing regulations, all vehicles must be parked separately from tents. We aim to keep camping and parking as convenient as possible while still complying with our license. This condition has been added to the license for your safety and we hope you will help by following the new directions when on site.
Can I have a campfire?
Unfortunately, due to significant damage to the land during 2013, the landowner has requested that there are NO CAMPFIRES within camping areas. We are planning to have a large communal campfire in each camping field.
Will there be showers and washing facilities?
A limited number of hot showers will be available operating just outside the entrance to the festival site next to disabled camping and close to family camping. Showers are limited in number and are token operated for a small fee. Taps are located at regular intervals around the perimeter of the camping fields.
Ticket and Pricing FAQs
Will tickets be available at the gate?
Tickets will be available at the gate as long as we don't sell out in advance. For guaranteed entry, we recommend you buy your tickets online before arriving here.
Is the price of camping included in the ticket price?
Yes. Friday, Saturday and Sunday night camping is included in the weekend ticket price. If you would like to arrive early please add one Thursday Camping supplement (per adult) to your order.
How many nights of camping are included in the weekend ticket price?
You may camp Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights with your Solfest ticket. If you would like to arrive early and camp on Thursday night too, you must purchase one Thursday Camping supplement per adult ticket.
Do I have to pay extra for my campervan/caravan/trailer tent?
Yes. A small additional fee is charged for motorised vehicles. This can be purchased with your tickets.
I am attending Solfest as a Carer, do I need to buy a ticket?
No. Carers come FREE to Solfest. To claim your free Carers ticket, please purchase the tickets you require (adult, young persons, children and Thursday camping) with the exception of the Carers' ticket. Skiddle now handle all of these requirements and will sort it out for you from their website.
Does my child need their own ticket?
Yes, except for Carers, everyone at Solfest must purchase a ticket. Children three years old or under will get their tickets for FREE but you must still order them.
What is the difference between an 'early bird' and a standard ticket?
Early bird tickets are an *online exclusive* -- they are cheaper than our standard tickets and limited in number so get yours early!
How long are 'early bird' tickets available online?
A limited number of early bird tickets will be available online on the first date of sale. Once they're gone, only full price tickets will be available so get yours early.
Transport and Travel FAQs
Where is Solfest?
Solfest is located on the beautiful Solway coast between Aspatria and Silloth. Head for Aspatria in Cumbria on the A596. Once there, turn onto the B5301 heading towards Silloth. Solfest is located approximately 4 miles up this road.
Is there a bus service?
Yes. We operate a free shuttle bus service that runs from Thursday to Monday between Aspatria train station and the Solfest site
Can I get a taxi?
Yes. There are several local taxi firms that will pick you up and drop you off at the festival site, we'd recommend Thomson Travel on 01697 321 549.
Please note: The event information above has been added by the organiser. Whilst we try to ensure all details are up-to-date we do not make any warranty or representation as to the accuracy or completeness of the information shown.