26 August 2019


We're home, cleaned, achy and exhausted BUT our hearts and brains are full with love and memories! Now, don't be fooled, festivals with children are NOT easy and they come with a LOT of tantrums, panic and stress but if you focus on the negatives you'll lose the positives and there have been so many positives! Even with Iris having a stinking attitude.

Anyway! The weekend! Let's GO. 

D A Y  O N E!

We arrived on Friday around 2pm! Brad had travelled up earlier with his Step-Dad as they had kindly lent us their caravan for the weekend. We headed straight into the festival for lunch and was rather surprised to find we had access to the premium and press areas! It was such a nice place to chill and there were food stalls, a bar, places to sit undercover and in the sun AND posh loos! Which is a must!

The plus was there was also a viewing platform too which was great too!! I actually got chatting to a lady who I asked if she thought upgrading to the premium tickets were worth it and she said that it absolutely was! She said the extra space and toilets made it worth every penny but we both agreed there should be a second viewing platform for Press and premium holders at the castle stage too. Her Daughter had autism so found the crowds overwhelming so this helped her enjoy it as they had left Lewis Capaldi due to the crowding. (I'll also get onto that a bit later too).

Anyway! After eating a baguette, we headed back to the viewing platform for Fleetingwood Mac! They were AMAZING! I really enjoyed listening to the songs I'm unlikely to ever hear live for real and they even covered Stevie Nicks - Edge of Seventeen as well which is such a brilliant song!!

We spent the afternoon wandering, finding our way around and we spent some time with "Auntie Hannah!" by the beats and swing tent and they ran around and danced together and it was so cute! Hannah is Iris' godmother and has been my best friend since forever! I swear it's been at least 20 years and It was so lovely to watch her dancing with my littles, putting glitter on my littles when years ago we went to Bestival and Download together and she put glitter on me then and we danced together.

Around 6:30pm we got hungry so we headed to find food. We got one cheese and tomato, Papa John's pizza and some chips from Mrs Singhs too (so Rufus could eat) and we listened to the sounds of 'Doves'.

Once we finished dinner we headed to watch The Specials and braved the crowds too. Whilst we waited for The Specials a lovely lady let the littles sit on her blanket and then another lady asked if they wanted her leftover churros which of course they did! She also let them have the chocolate dip too. Which of course went EVERYWHERE.

We only managed about 6 songs before the kids were bored and we left to walk back to the caravan. Now the specials are great but to kids, I can see why they'd get bored.

D A Y  T W O : 

We arrived a bit later on Saturday due to traffic from the shuttle bus! We wanted to see the Silver Beatles but missed them sadly! By this point, we headed for lunch and forgot that All Saints were playing which was sooo annoying. 

We headed over to the Kidz Arena and at 2pm they had some Jedi training run by Jedha Juniors who are located in Portsmouth. Lucas LOVED it and I'm hoping he'll use his lightsaber better in future!
There are so many things to do in the kidz arena and so much going on. We didn't spend much time there on Saturday but it was great the time we did spend!

At 2:40 we headed to the castle stage and had some ice cream and were dancing to Tim Burgess (of The Charlatans)
My Dad and Step-Mum arrived not much later and we stayed and danced to The Twang before heading to find food!

We found food in three different places! My Dad got woodfired Pizza, My step mum got blue cheese and bacon loaded fries, the kids got fries, Brad got an SBC cheeseburger and I had a Halloumi burger.
We headed back with it to the castle stage which by now was just a huge sea of humans and glitter!
Professor Green had started playing and as a Pro Green fan, I was rather excited!

FINALLY, at 7:05pm on Saturday Night at Victorious Festival 2019, you heard the words "HERE COMES THE MONEY!" and at that moment my life was complete. I was surrounded by a sea of people, my view wasn't perfect, there were strange humans talking all the way through next to me but I knew every word to every song and I was just so happy! Lewis Capaldi was in front of me. A long way, but in front of me! 

Everything about him was amazing! Can I re-live that moment all of again for the rest of my life? Jelly arms for holding my camera up, the excited feeling in my stomach and the emotion running through my body as he sang! Sounds pathetic to some BUT that is what seeing someone you truly love, perform live does to you. It's a feeling I hadn't felt for a long time and I'm just so happy. 

We also may not have managed to stay for the hives, much to Brad's disappointment but we did see them walking in on foot, which I quickly snapped. Lewis Capaldi on the other hand? Drove out in a blacked-out car! DAMN YOU CAPALDI! DAMN YOU! haha.

We spent a lot of Saturday evening wandering around with my Dad and Step-Mum! We caught random sets on stages and Lucas enjoyed a VERY sugary lollipop whilst Iris napped and Rufus bobbed up in down in the sling. We head to the Mayfield stage in the carpark which was so cute and quirky! It was all about craft beer too.

D A Y  T H R E E

We arrived around 1:30pm after a slow morning! Once again the first stop was lunch! Ed's bangers, which is basically a sausage with gravy in a Yorkshire pudding wrap! A M A Z I N G! 
I also ordered a Victorious Daquiri with that! I'd had the Tropical Rumbull the day before and was desperate to try one of the frozen cocktails which were £8 BUT I don't think that's badly priced considering that a cocktail at most places usually falls at that price anyway. 
They were also serving Pompey pornstars which also sounded nice too!

After lunch, we started to do our usual wandering as at festivals unless you want to see a certain band or artist, there wandering is great. We ended up at the Castle stage again where Laurel had just started. She had an amazing voice and very much a Florence Welch sound to it too, which if you know me, you'll know I am a HUGE Florence and the machine fan!

It was lovely to sit in the sun and listen to her! I also snapped some photos as sadly I couldn't get a photo-pit pass this year BUT maybe next year! Next year, I am coming for you photo-pit pass.
Anyway, It's made me realise I have a huge love for festival photography (and Artist photography) it's so incredibly candid and it's everything I love.

Once we'd watched Laurel, the kids were begging to go back to the Kidz Arena, we sat on some hay bales and watched a magician called RossPresto, also local to Portsmouth as a children's entertainer!
Then all of a sudden Peppa and George Pig come out and work their way around these Hay bales, much to Lucas and Iris' excitement.

We were then greeted by two police officers called the "fun police" checking children are behaving and having a good time. One was VERY tall too, which the kids found very funny and had to have their photo taken with.

We stumbled upon some more kids entertainment hosted by Children's parties Portsmouth. Now, I was sceptical because the littles don't like being told what to do BUT they joined in with the parachute game, watched some children partake in the toilet roll game and they had a dance competition and when you thought it was all over, it had only just begun. The children were asked to put their fists in the air and jump, like ravers and Darude - Sandstorm came on (for us oldies) and foam started coming out! THE LITTLES WERE HAVING THEIR FIRST FOAM PARTY TO SANDSTORM! I was instantly jealous! Then a confetti cannon went off and I was more jealous than ever! So not fair. I wanted to join in. Being serious though, you can tell from the photos (and in the vlog) that all the kids bloody loved it.

Then it was food time again! Why is it that you feel constantly hungry at festivals? Is it because you're constantly surrounded by the smell of cooking food? I could have eaten 20 meals a day but even on 3, I've gained back 6lbs so it's a good thing I didn't isn't it.

We opted for pasta this time because Rufus had basically been living on a diet of chips because I was worried nothing would be safe for him to eat. He loved the pasta pot and it was the nicest thing I ate all weekend along with the Halloumi burger!

Food-wise, there are a lot of allergen menus but I was too concerned about holding up the already long queues to ask most of the time. I also was told food for Rufus would have been okay too but there is a VERY strict no food policy in Victorious so be really careful with that. I would also tell you to clue yourselves up and respect the rules because they don't bend them and I saw a lot of bottles, perfume, deodorant, makeup, food, etc... at the bins as you walk in and they really do check your bags too, which I am all for with the threats of terrorism and things going on in the world. Better safe than sorry and hats off to Victorious for making sure we were safe.

We headed back to my favourite spot the press area and took a spot on the viewing platform for Razorlight! I was very thankful for my 200mm lens because I could snap a few shots of the artists on the common stage from a distance.
Razorlight were brilliant! They put on a great performance and it was great to have a little dance too! In the morning is such a great song too.!

Whilst we waited for The Vaccines and the Hampshire boy that is Justin Young to come on Brad headed off for curry chips as he hadn't wanted Pasta earlier on. Iris obviously scrapped the sauce because she's clearly deprived of food.
The Vaccines were great! I couldn't believe how great they were really. I feel like you forget how many good songs they have.

I was very excited to see Plan B next too! He's someone I've loved for a long time! Since the defamation of Strickland Banks in 2010, I've loved his music.
He put on an amazing performance and even played Charmaine when the crowd was yelling for him to play it, stating "Why do you always want Charmaine? it's a disgusting song" or something along those lines! You could hear the crowd singing along and it's pretty cool watching the crowd from above.

He played a 50-minute set as the sunset over Victorious and the main stage! Playing songs from his first album "TDOSB", Ill manors and Heaven before all hell breaks loose and who needs actions when you got words.

Our festival finished there as we headed back to the caravan with one VERY tired and VERY naughty Iris BUT like I said at the beginning, I won't focus on the negatives too much.

Overall, Victorious was amazing, it's an incredible festival and I loved it. I loved the music, the atmosphere, even down to a group of lads asking to borrow suncream because they didn't have any but were burning up. I found a phone in the toilet and returned it within minutes to its owner, everyone was lovely, so it was easy to be lovely back.

I also found everyone so chatty and happy and the kidz arena was spot on and perfect for kidz entertainment. It was sometimes a nice escape from the hecticness. Saturday was by far the busiest day and I don't know if that is normal? Was that because it was a Saturday? Was it the lineup? Was it Capaldi that drew in the crowds? (Get him back as a headliner next year Victorious!) I don't know but it was 100% the busiest day by far.

I'm going to summarise pro's and con's below and what I liked and didn't like.

T H E  L I N E  U P

The line up was great! not full of one genre and not one style of music either. There was something for everyone! 
I think Lewis Capaldi should have been moved to the common stage as the castle stage was manic and a little overwhelming for many people!

Other than that I am just gutted I missed Bloc Party, Clean Bandit and Two Door Cinema Club, to name a few! 

T H E  C A M P S I T E

Amazing, portaloos were average and the caravan part only had one toilet which I understood as many campers and caravans have toilets but we didn't want to use our toilet for anything other than wee's and I think a lot of other people had that idea too, so there were queues but that's expected. The campsite was quiet, well manned and when we were leaving this morning looked pretty clean too! I was really impressed. A few more lights would have been great and there were no lights in the caravan field at all which made it hard to find the Caravan with kids but that's soooo minor. 

T H E  S H U T T L E  B U S

What an amazing service, we were particularly worried about travelling with a buggy as our festival trolley was a problem! Cheers Very for the dud trolley. Anyway, the service was great and the staff were really on the ball! If you couldn't get on the first bus because the buggy section was full you were the first one on the next bus! It's a free service which is much appreciated and pretty straight forward and relatively quick. We only got stuck in traffic once and it still wasn't ridiculously long!

The shuttle buses and staff at the stops were also giving out free bottles of sealed water meaning you could bring them back to the campsite or into the festival if you didn't open them and in the scorching heat we had over the weekend was so appreciated and a kind gesture.

My only slight criticism would be possibly having a free shuttle service on Monday morning, even making it pre-book so you know exactly how many buses you'll need and have that service take you to clarence pier and the hard (maybe). We had a coach from clarence pier and don't drive so having that option to go and get your national express coaches or buses and ferries to the island too. Or even charging a small fair for this as I's have paid a small fee this morning to get back to my coach. We ended up waiting an hour for an uber as that was the cheapest option and the Pompey cabs wanted £25 but uber was £10-£14. Just an idea really. 

T H E  F E S T I V A L 

it's got some amazing Insta-spots which all festival-goers want and it has such a great atmosphere. I loved the Peas and Love sign, the dinosaurs, the Victorious sign with the flowers which I totally forgot to get a photo on! The big light up letters, even down the walls having patterns on.

I do think a premium pass/press area is needed near the castle stage (being the second biggest stage with big acts on still).

I also loved the relaxed atmosphere, I saw very little KO'd people and sick and things and the toilets appeared well maintained as I never worried about no loo roll. I also just loved walking around barefoot and not stepping on glass, so well done for that too! It's how it should be. The staff weren't grumpy and they were on the ball. At one point when we were in the kidz arena, we headed this almighty scream and yelling and this teenage boy had jumped over the fences to get in for free and snapped his leg BADLY! I have never seen security run so fast, ambulance called, the medical team on hand and they were so professional, even though I'm sure they wanted to lack in sympathy for his stupidity, but they remained calm, professional and helped him out until the ambulance came.

The ticket prices are also incredibly reasonable! Early bird tickets for next year can be purchased HERE for as little as £121 (with booking fee) over 18! campervan zone camping and tickets and the same for regular camping! Day tickets starting from £27.50 per ticket for a day (over 18 prices, again) and £99 for weekend tickets without camping - which unless you're walking distance to home it's so worth just upgrading to camping too anyway!

It's such a reasonably priced festival and just a lovely festival too!


As mentioned before I would advise you not to chicken out of asking about allergen menus! Even if the queue is long, if you're like Rufus or have children with Dairy and Soya allergies then you deserve to eat things other than chips too, so don't be afraid to ask. That is not Victorious or the catering staffs fault, that's mine! 
Other than that, there's so much variety (minus a salad bar for fatties like me, who have now got to lose 6lbs again! Haha) To be honest it's nice to let your hair down and eat wood-fired pizza, pasta, 7bone Burger, Pie & Vinyl, cheese toasty's (made with eggy bread) and big fat sausage rolls and Yorkshires! Enjoy the food and eat everything! Even the bubble waffles. 

I S  I T  F O R  K I D S?

If you read my blog, you most likely have children and are probably thinking is it for kids? The answer is big-fat-yes! Now, I cannot guarantee your children will behave and I can't promise good weather but I can say that there were so many things for the littles to do! Rufus was safe and cosy in the sling to stop him from crawling under a foot or stage but there is so much for kids to do and if they love music and dancing, it is perfect. Iris was a demon all weekend, which truthfully did put a dampener on the weekend because had she had behaved the weekend would have been even better but she's two, she was exhausted and it is a long, overwhelming weekend to say the least. 

The kidz arena as mentioned above has so much to do, character meet-and-greets, shows, arts and crafts, dance tents, entertainments, LIDL were even there doing a kids version of tough mudder and there was even a sand-pit! You could have spent all day in the kidz arena alone. They close it at 6 too, so be aware of that but I think that's a great idea anyway.

I have done Bestival (When it was around, all you youngins will forget that was even a thing one day, like Woodstock) and Download and truthfully, I wouldn't have dreamed about taking my kids to those, too many "silly" drunks, whereas you knew 90% of the over 18's were drunk at victorious but no one was stupid, well not that I saw and no one made me fear for my children's safety, of course we left by 10 on all the days but by 6 most people are usually passed the steaming stage. I did keep the kids close and they weren't allowed to run off too far to dance in the evenings but that was beneficial to them and to others as why should they compromise their good time to watch out for tiny people at 10pm? The festival is honestly so child-friendly and I would take them back in a heartbeat.

So, Victorious Festival 2020? Please have me back! I want in again, I want a photo-pit pass, I want Lewis Capaldi as a headliner and I don't want much I promise. On a serious note, I will be back next year, maybe without children, but that is just because of the fact I want to drink Victorious Daquiris and dance till 11pm!

Thank you for having me Victorious Festival 2019! You were truly amazing. 

*I was given press tickets for myself, Brad, Lucas, Iris and Rufus, in return for an honest blog post and review. All words and pictures are my own and honest. Everything else (food, drinks, travel, caravan and activities) were paid for by myself*

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