Since my first Greenbelt in 2000 the festival has come to mark the beginning of a new year. Perhaps we are all conditioned in childhood by school terms to see September as a beginning anyway, but for me Greenbelt each year marks ends and beginnings, a time to reflect on the past year with people I only see once a year, and to be thankful that we are all there once again. A meeting place on all our journeys.
Highlights this year were, as is so often the case at Greenbelt, the unplanned things that we didn’t expect to happen. Beer and Hymns in the Organic Beer Tent has to be one of the funniest and most refreshing of experiences – and I’m not just talking about the beer! The same evening we got to the Performance Cafe early to ensure a decent seat for Bell Jar on Sunday evening, and were in time to catch a set by Levi Weaver, who was fantastic. The Living Generously area this year in the Pulse seemed well attended, and in prime position for people who were hanging around waiting for another batch of Pru’s brownies to come out of the oven! We also got to enjoy a set by the fantastic Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain on the all new main stage.
It was always going to be a bit of a strange festival for me this year as the Small Person wasn’t arriving until late Saturday night, making a “celebrity arrival” straight from the West End stage, brought by my parents to whom I am massively grateful for ensuring that we all got to greenbelt at all! It was strange to be without her for the first two days, but I’m so happy we all got to spend Sunday and Monday of the festival together – and get her back to the theatre in time for her show on Monday night!