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You are in: Dorset > Entertainment > Outdoor events > The Larmer Tree Festival 2005

The Bees

The Bees

The Larmer Tree Festival 2005

Grown men dressed as fairies made their annual appearance at Cranborne Chase's Larmer Tree Gardens for this year's festival. The Bees headlined the main stage and 3 Daft Monkeys turned up the heat on the Garden Stage on a truly scorching weekend.

Even technical problems with their picture projection equipment wasn't going to dampen the spirits of the Friday night headliners, The Bees. 

Even before they'd even started playing the crowd were shouting for Chicken Payback.  A request that was greeted with "It's too early" from singer, Paul Butler.  Needless to say the fans were appeased in the encore.

The Bees, who hail from the Isle Of Wight, played The larmer Tree Festival hot off the heals of supporting Oasis at two massive gigs in Manchester. 



Playing earlier on Friday afternoon in the Acoustic Roots Cafe was a band featured in  BBC Dorset's Band Showcase, Roads.  The three-piece who grew up in Wimborne were on the bill a total of three times over the five day festival. 

The Bob Marley influenced band played their own brand of reggae to a very appreciative audience.  They even received a round of applause BEFORE they'd even played one particular song.  Move Mugabe is a song about the Zimbabwean leader, Robert Mugabe.  Bass player Doug Vowles explained to BBC Dorset just why the song is so important to the band:

"We started playing it about four years ago and then people just enjoyed the song's groove.  But I think it's recently that people have actually been taking more notice of the lyrics.  I think Live8 has opened people's eyes to what's going on in Africa."

Doug also sees festival's like The Larmer Tree as a great opportunity for Dorset bands to get themselves known on the scene:

"Dorset is a hard break for music.  It's hard to get noticed because there aren't many venues outside Bournemouth.  I think more support is needed for music in Dorset and this festival is great for bands like us."

Another musical highlight were 3 Daft Monkeys who wowed the crowd on the Garden Stage.  The group have just finished touring with The Levellers and they describe themselves as a groovy outfit playing music with Celtic, Gypsy and Spanish tones.

3 Daft Monkeys

3 Daft Monkeys

They even dared the festival goers not to dance, and dance they did.  It was also nice to see a welcome return for the recorder in live music!

The thing with this festival, though, is that, for some festival-goers, the music isn't the main reason for spending an extended weekend in the stunning surroundings of The Larmer Tree Gardens.

It's become a firm favourite with families from all over the UK, and it's not difficult to see why.  With designated children's areas offering activities and workshops in everything from baby yoga to unicycling, the festival is a safe and exciting place for the little ones.

One of the therapies on offer

One of the therapies on offer

There's an evident spirituality about the festival that not only inspires grown men to dress as fairies but also explains the many people that take advantage of the holistic therapies and treatments on offer in the Secret Garden. 

Due to popular demand there were more than 25 therapists offering treatments ranging from Classical Osteopathy, Swedish Massage, Bach Flower Remedies and Thermo-Auricular Therapy.

The Secret Garden offers the opportunity to escape the rest of the chilled festival for a bit of peace and pampering that left you, in some cases literally, positively horizontal.

Adults wanting to get their own hands on some action weren't disappointed by the range of workshops on offer.  The Didgeridoo Workshop was packed with people wanting to learn the fundamentals of playing the oldest wind instrument in the world. 

The Didgeridoo Workshop

The Didgeridoo Workshop

The Drumming Workshop taught the assembled crowd how to manipulate the tone and bass of the drum with the hands and culminated in an energetic jam session.

The festival takes place each year thanks to the enthusiasm of organisers James Shepard and Julia Safe. The first festival was a day of jazz and blues music, attended by around 200 people.  The festival is now so popular that, for the last nine years, weekend tickets have sold out in advance.

last updated: 20/07/2008 at 13:21
created: 18/07/2005

Have Your Say

Were you at The Larmer Tree Festival? What did you think?

The BBC reserves the right to edit comments submitted.

the song is so nice is there more larmer song that a so funny how do you make such funny songs .

i went last year and it was the best festival i have ever been to and i wish to go again lol ROCK ONxxx

ssssh everyone!! lets keep our little festival exactly that!! little!

i will be back!!

Clean, beautiful, safe grounds and lots of mellow people dancing their hearts out; and creating. Lets hope it will stay so! SsssHHHH!!! :) P.s. Its spelt The Larmer Tree Festival. My wishing tree wish: Please only tell your best nicest friends.

it was cool and all but not very good music, i hate sandi thom

it was cool and all but not very good music, i hate sandi thom

I have been going to the lamertree ever since I was nine and love it every time I go! Im now twelve and think its better than a trip abroad! Its a great place to lisetn to good music and meet new people.I t good for all ages because my cousin goes every year and she is three and near are loads of O.A.P's there. If you are disabled it doesnt matter either. It has disabled tiolets, a disabled camp site and special stages for you to sit on so you can see the performers. If I had to rate the lamertree festival I would give it a 10/10. Its worth every penny!

mollie taylor
its was amazing it had everything i want 2 go next year nd will if i can!!!!!!

Fab festival, really chilled, some top music, good atmosphere the whole time. be back next year

woow this is the third time ive been to larmer tree abd this time i wen wit my best friend anna and we ended p wit a couple of fit boys in a tent and lots (and i mean LOTS ) of alchohol . to al u wierdos out there C U @ LARMER TREE I LOVE U ALLL!!!!

luizee AKA joy patrol
thanks to everyone who made lamertree, lamertree!! It will be an experience i will never forget ever!!!! I met some wonderful people and i had a fantastic time :) lots of love to everyone xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx (I will be bak!!)

saw a fantastic energetic performance by 'this is seb clarke' the twelve piece band filled the stage and let the croud her true rock n roll music. definately the best band of the weekend

Ken Dalton
This event is very well organized and atracts the better class of person. There is no hint of discord and no bad language. Everyone was in a good mood. The music was excellent, especially ROADS who played their uplifting songs four times over the five days. It is not surprising the tickets sell so fast> I can't wait for next year . I just hope the event doesn't grow too big! Cheers Ken!

I think the larmar tree was great! And i'm going next year definitly!!!As im only 12 i enjoyed it loadz!!! (not proper english) But the showers and toilets wernt too good!

Hollie Lindridge
This was the first year I went to Larmer and I absolutely loved it!It was also a bit extra special because my Dad and his partner got married there! I cant wait to go back next year!!!!

Absalutly amazing! I did a Samba workshop and then performed in the carnival procession - might not sound much, but one of the most awsome things I have done so far!

caroline corke
great festival, but a little over the top with the old health and safety regs.... did you know that the beach balls and fans given out to children at the festival by one stand were banned by the organisers since apparently they are dangerous!!!!! how crazy is that?

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