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6 cool things to look out for at Nozstock

By James Clark

By James Clark

6 cool things to look out for at Nozstock


Maybe you’ve tried family festivals before, and either loved or hated them. A lot of family festivals can be really fun, but some have evolved into glorified soft play areas, with a little too much Mr Tumble and not enough Pimms bus.

That’s not what Nozstock is about though. Like the very best of festivals, Nozstock was founded by a fun-loving family, their extended relatives, friends, acquaintances and pretty much everyone who had a guitar to play or a joke to tell. It has kept it’s laid back, safe and friendly atmosphere since it’s origins at the turn of the millennium, with the ethos that festivals aren’t only about entertaining but also in interaction and participation. If that sounds like it would be right up your street (or field), Nozstock is taking place in Herefordshire from 22-24th July. Here are some things that you might want to look out for if you are thinking of going along.

The fab line up
With DJ stages and live music stages, Nozstock’s line up is unique and diverse. From artists such as Gentlemans Dub Club and GQ to soul queen Harleighblu, there really is something for everyone to enjoy. It’s the sort of festival where you’ll come away with a few new favourite bands that you’ll be listening to on the drive home.

Bantam of the Opera theatre
The Bantam of the Opera will be filled with a weekend of strange occurrences, enthralling theatre, jaw-dropping circus, side-splitting poetry, mesmerizing puppetry and more moments of magic than you can shake a stick at.

Chicken Cow cafe
Everything about this place makes my mouth water. Breakfasts of potato hash and beans, snazzy pizza breads and the Chicken Cow cafe’s famous courgette cake with cream cheese and lime icing. With loads of kids, vegan and gluten free options available, you’ll never want to leave really.

Tent of Temporary Thought
Hosted by Matt Cummins and Rikki Livermore, the tent feature lots of up-and-coming spoken word and powerful performance poetry guaranteed to make you think, laugh and cry. The 2015 Nozslam winner Jack MacMillan is also back for 2016.

Crafts
As well as music and poetry, Nozstock is full of things to see, do and get involved with. Loads of craft activities and workshops will be put on over the weekend, including blacksmithing, making recycled copper wire bracelets, jewellery workshops and willow weaving. What’s not to love?

Camping
With a lovely safe atmosphere, camping doesn’t have to be stressful at Nozstock and is half of the experience. With a Bundle Bed, the camping experience will be even easier and you can relax on a comfy camping bed at the end of a long day of dancing, crafting and memory making.

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The Helpful Hiker

By James Clark

By James Clark

The Helpful Hiker


"When we’re camping, especially after a long day of walking, I often find myself craving a sweet treat. Lots of camping recipes, including many of my own, revolve around meat or fish, and dessert tends to get overlooked. So I thought I’d share a few baking ideas- outdoor style!"

The easiest way is using a dutch oven (it’s not what you’re thinking!). This seems to be more common in America, but it’s so easy and a great way to broaden your campfire cuisine horizons.

After we’ve cooked our main meal we let the fire die down, you need to wait until the embers are all grey. There will still be plenty of heat left for whipping up a tasty pudding. We then put a metal pot in the fire, making sure there are embers underneath and on top of the pot. Sometimes we have even made our own makeshift oven by covering a cooking pot with a few layers of foil.

The most straightforward thing to make is to use a packet mix, ideally one that only needs water added, and just mix it up and pour into your cooking pot. It only takes about 10 minutes and then just dive in with a spoon! We’ve tried cookie and cake mixes and both worked. You can also do a similar thing with chilled cinnamon swirl dough (check out the chilled pastry section in your local supermarket). Line your pot with foil, then simply slice the dough and arrange in a layer in the bottom of the pot.

If you fancy being a bit more adventurous, try a black forest dump cake (I promise I’m not just going for comedic titles!) It’s called a dump cake as you simply dump the ingredients in your pot and as if by magic it comes out perfectly.

Try emptying a tin of cherries into a lined pot (even better if there's no kids around and you can find some soaked in some kind of alcohol) and then make up a chocolate cake mix and chuck it on top of the cherries. It’s not a scientific process so you’ll need to check it from time to time. The cherries should keep the cake nice and moist.

Top Tip: you can buy dutch oven liners online which make the whole process easier -and cleaner!"

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Horsing around the campfire

By James Clark

By James Clark

Horsing around the campfire


Horsing around the campfire – Middle Ninfa Campsite 

We love camping.

What we really love is wild camping, where you feel as if you have completely escaped the hustle and bustle of everyday life and are surviving simply with your tent, campfire and inventive cooking techniques… Oh, and the bottle of red wine to sip whilst around the campfire of course. 

For us, a campsite that has exceeded in provided a perfect location for this kind of camping isMiddle Ninfa near Abergavenny. The road leading up to the site itself is a perfectly steep, winding, bumpy road which is sufficiently long enough to take you away from the main road. We arrived to the sight of Richard collecting vegetables from their poly-tunnel, all of which you can buy from them along with salad, fruit and duck eggs. And if that isn’t enough for you, they can order in other organic, local produce from the farm shop two miles away.

They have seven small private sites away from the main site, all of which have a firepit and plenty of space to pitch a tent or two. We chose to stay in Deri, which is perched on the top of the hill and has a rather friendly horse called Fly who loves to join you round the campfire in the evening!

The walks and local pubs nearby are fantastic and the views over the Usk Valley of Skirrid and Monmouthshire are really stunning. All in all, a fab campsite if you’re looking for a back-to-basics site with delicious local produce on site and breathtaking scenery.

IMAGES:

Map – taken from Middle Ninfa website’s

Harriet giving Fly a cuddle by the campfire

One of the many commanding views on our walk

The nearby lake

Link:

http://middleninfa.co.uk

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