Farmer Phil's Festival

 The Coming of Age

Another year, another warm memory. Farmer Phil’s celebrated their 20th anniversary last year and despite the relentless downpours, the gutterpunks, the country bumpkins, the urbanites and the gentle folk alike, were not discouraged and returned another year of merriment.

It was a positively moist start to the festival after some untimely rainstorms, yet undeterred by this year’s deluge, the Farmer Phil’s family welcomed the influx of faithful revellers with a smile and a wave.

The organisers of this wonderfully petite festival stuck to a system that works, with intelligently hand built facilities that were simple and convenient. 

Farmer Phil’s does its best to indulge local talent, most of which can be found on the woodland stage, and those lucky enough to have gained international recognition find themselves on the parlour rotating stage by day. But local talent doesn’t just mean precarious cover bands, although these were tastefully selected, and they did not disappoint!

Shropshire’s reputable two-tone community rotates the two stages day and night. The Neville Staple Band, featuring former member of the Specials and life partner, Christine  Sugary Staple, raised vibrations on the muddied dance floor on Saturday evening. 


The main stage indulged world music this year, Michael Messer’s Mitra captivated the crowd with a curious fusion of delta blues and classical Hindustani mixing eastern and western slide guitar influences. Not unlike Voijta Violinist’s performance from 2018 on the woodland stage, the atmosphere was a charmed one, and this is what is so delightfully unpredictable about the musical eclecticism at Farmer Phil’s.

During his closing oratory, Phil re-iterated that he intends that this event is to continue year on year, so keep your eyes on the social media pages and their website for details of the 2020 family gathering.

Thank you Phil for providing such amazing entertainment in what has got to be, the most beautiful of settings, not only in the county but in the entire country. Thank you for throwing your land open for what has got to be the best small festival in Britain ...

Photographs by Gwen Moon