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Latitude 2021


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1 hour ago, big hog said:

Real shame about Sons of Kemet. Was really looking forward to it but the reduced 3-piece band just felt a bit sad and deflating.

Incredible weekend though. So glad we went.

Yeah, it wasn't quite the show we were expecting and was a little underwhelming for a closing set. Adding Nubya Garcia into the mix made it interesting enough though and very glad they made the effort to play regardless. 

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27 minutes ago, JHad said:

Yeah, it wasn't quite the show we were expecting and was a little underwhelming for a closing set. Adding Nubya Garcia into the mix made it interesting enough though and very glad they made the effort to play regardless. 

Ah that sounds cool. We left before she came on sadly, just weren't feeling it at all. But I did catch a bit of her set earlier on.

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Working for Oxfam I found Thursday pre- entry checks heavy going. Lots of people arriving with us who had been mis-directed several times to add ons they had paid a lot of money for. People paid £100 for ‘pink parking’ ‘close to their tent’ & walked further than they would have done if they hadn’t. 2 women with 5 kids between them who had been sent one ticket short and then an email saying they could pick up the other ticket on the gate, sent from pillar to post with all their luggage (& kids) in the heat when surely they could have just sent an e-ticket, or let them stay at one gate whilst WE went and sorted it. Older people being made to walk round in circles to prove their covid status when the NHS app went down. No flexibility - we tried accepting the little blue card with photo ID but were told to stop - 70 year old doing this are not on a blag ffs! Yet whilst they took the money & didn’t seem to care about people’s actual experience, I was yelled at for sipping at the coffee Oxfam brought round for us, in between customers, because ‘it doesn’t look nice’. So all of that coloured the rest of the festival a little for me. Style over substance.

I thought Friday would be my worst shift as it was an ‘Emergency Exit Gate’ but ended up being moved around between the BBC Sounds and Obelisk. Got to see a good chunk of Mabel on my break, was on the viewing platform for Hot Chip & danced my socks off (probably more than was appropriate although we are told that as stewards people like to see us dancing). During that afternoon I spent a lot of time on the production gate and met Swim Deep, Hot Chip, Goat Girl and others. The comedian, Maisie Adam, chatted with us for a good while and was really lovely (she is the mod one from the panel shows). That shift flew!

Saturday was our day off and was amazing. Started with Nadia Rose who was great fun, and this was the point where I felt pretty emotional as I watched my first non-working gig. Just watching young people jump and dance was a truly beautiful thing. Then of course, Rudimental and The Chemical Brothers just lit the place up. Out of anything you could have given me after all those months of nothingness, The Chems would have been my choice - everything that you would want in a crowd and a show. There’s nothing I can add to what’s already been said.

Sunday - Well, ‘What Did You Expect’ from the Vaccines. Had to be there & summed the whole thing up when Justin said ‘I feel like I won a competition to have my old life back for a day’. You also know exactly what you are getting with The Vaccines - always one great pop tune after another, even the ones you don’t know yet, you know by the first chorus. Happy times.

Last shift was supposed to be The Comedy tent but ended after Jo Brand - who was lovely and fun, but I think comedy is always really hard at a festival because there is always so much background noise. Then we got moved to the viewing platform on the main stage and we’re around for Bombay Bicycle Club and Bastille. Found Bastille incredibly disappointing. I’m not a massive fan but caught part of their Glastonbury set a couple of years ago and it looked great fun, but the whole ‘re-orchestrated’ thing seemed to be the sound of them spending an hour and a half disappearing up their own arse.

Ended the festival very very tired. Got pinged on the way back but been for a PCR and it’s negative. Feet still hurt.

Really glad I went in the current circumstances. I had a great time and consider myself really lucky to have been there, but overall, Latitude doesn’t have enough for us to do that 8 hour drive again in normal times.

Edited by amfy
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2 hours ago, big hog said:

Real shame about Sons of Kemet. Was really looking forward to it but the reduced 3-piece band just felt a bit sad and deflating.

Incredible weekend though. So glad we went.

It was a bit anti-climatic, but I’d still rather take 3/4 of Sons of Kemet over Bastille. I regret nothing.

Edited by balthazarstarbuck
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Let's see how much of the 5 days in a field I can actually remember 😅

So, arrived Weds around 3pm ish, campervan set up gin poured, Covid passes & wristbanded by around 3.30ish - and happily that was the last time I even thought about the pandemic all weekend!

Thurs we had a wander around the rest of the camping areas earlyafternoon as the steward on CV gate said it was all open... it was not, the arena opened at 5pm as usual.  Wandered around Thurs eve, which felt much, much busier than any previous Thurs eve, but was totally expected to be honest.

Worried there was no gin bar after a full sweep of the site.... found the gin bar hidden in the Forbidden Forrest, it soon became our second home 😉

Saw The Mighty Flux  in The Trailer Park - brilliant fun - danced to a jungle track telling us not to destroy the jungle.  More gin...

Fri - wow so many people everywhere!  More gin.  Definitely saw Maisie Adams on Comedy stage, some of Hot Chip, had dinner with a pair of nurses who were 90s clubbers (as were we, excellent conversations) taught another couple the pincer move of sweeping up outside the left hand side of a tent/stage and winding up "front left, by the speaker" More gin.

Sat - finally accepting of the sheer volume of people, leaning into being surrounded by sweaty, dusty festivallers - ah yes, this is home!  Churros for breakfast.  Kerry Godliman set luckily started later than scheduled so we managed to see it all.  Gin.  Preparations for evening shenanigans.  The Chemical Brothers - absolutely wow! Met another couple of 90s clubbers & he was sooooooo excited totally made my night, hugged strangers, danced in warm rain, lightning!  3Ds at The Out Post - yes please.  Emergency tunes from the Ambulance in the Kids field.

Sun - scraped selves up, grabbed a charity taxi, Bill Bailey!  Pretty close to the front, begged & borrowed sunscreen- it was cloudy when we left the van!  I'm an idiot😅  Vegan Dog yum, fuckin, yum. Gin...

 

There may very well be more but that's what I can currently remember 😁 yes there were some queues for food but if you have to queue then the food will be good!  I waited over half hour for a Vegan Dog, it was well and truly worth it. 

Toilets; never had to queue too long, it there were massive lines I'd just head for another block, nothing is too far away.  The ones at the back of kids field usually no queues at all.  You just have to be smart about when to go to the loo 😅 

There were definitely fewer food traders but us hospitality bods have had it tough the last 18 months, many traders have gone out of business, many traders will stay at their more local food led events where the pitch fees are cheaper, and chatting to 1 trader they said they were having to use Festival Republics payment systems (card readers etc) and that FR were keeping the payments for over 7 days before they would release the £££££ - if that is correct then a lot of traders may not have wanted to go that route.

To surmise; bloody hell if was good to get back in a field, to not have internet so no BBC news app jumping in and spoiling the fun with its "breaking news", to totally forget about the real world, get back to the basics, campervan, nature, fresh air, live music, comedy, gin - more please 😁

Fuck me though how fucking good was the Chems gig 😍😍😍

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25 minutes ago, amfy said:

Older people being made to walk round in circles to prove their covid status when the NHS app went down. No flexibility - we tried accepting the little blue card with photo ID but were told to stop - 70 year old doing this are not on a blag ffs! Yet whilst they took the money & didn’t seem to care about people’s actual experience, I was yelled at for sipping at the coffee Oxfam brought round for us, in between customers, because ‘it doesn’t look nice’. So all of that coloured the rest of the festival a little for me. Style over substance.

That sounds poor - were the complaints about drinking coffee from your supervisor, the gate manager, or from some other Festival Republic type? The buggy never actually reached us but there was no problem with us drinking water etc (albeit we had to walk a fair distance to get it). I was doing COVID checks on Memorial Gate on Thursday evening and didn't see nearly as many of those issues - the Gate Manager told us to accept the Blue Cards while the app was playing up, and we eventually got access to a Wifi network broadcasting at the gate that we could share with customers who were struggling which helped with the app. I was hoping it'd be broadcasting elsewhere on site but no such luck.

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39 minutes ago, big hog said:

Ah that sounds cool. We left before she came on sadly, just weren't feeling it at all. But I did catch a bit of her set earlier on.

She was busy! Played 4 sets that I'm aware of - her own slot, late night surprise BBC Intro on Sunday, with Joe Armon-Jones and with Sons of Kemet. Anybody know of any more?! 

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20 minutes ago, incident said:

That sounds poor - were the complaints about drinking coffee from your supervisor, the gate manager, or from some other Festival Republic type? The buggy never actually reached us but there was no problem with us drinking water etc (albeit we had to walk a fair distance to get it). I was doing COVID checks on Memorial Gate on Thursday evening and didn't see nearly as many of those issues - the Gate Manager told us to accept the Blue Cards while the app was playing up, and we eventually got access to a Wifi network broadcasting at the gate that we could share with customers who were struggling which helped with the app. I was hoping it'd be broadcasting elsewhere on site but no such luck.

The complaint was from an FR person. He really shouted at me. I had put my coffee down and was only sipping it when there were gaps between customers yet he started by shouting ‘what do you think you’re doing? What if you throw it over a customer?’. I tried to assure him that I hadn’t drunk it anywhere near a customer but then he just started shouting ‘It just doesn’t look nice’. So I just started saying ‘Sorry’ repeatedly to just stop him going on at me - but he kept shouting until eventually he was shouting ‘There’s no need for you to be sorry, you have nothing to apologise for. You’ve done nothing wrong!’ But he was still shouting - right in my face with no mask (I was wearing one due to my position in pre- festival covid clearance). I was thoroughly pissed off for about half an hour after that tbh.

 

in terms of network, I was hotspotting customers off my phone and data to get them through. I couldn’t have been more helpful. Those are the things customers remember, not ‘she was sipping a coffee when I came round the corner’.

I’m glad some other stewards had a better experience of ‘helping’ on day one though. It didn’t sit right. You partially do this to ‘give something back’ not to be part of a rip off and it left a bit of a sour taste for me so I’m happy that it was better at some other gates.

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Wow, that guy sounds like an utter dick. Sorry you had to deal with that - you expect the odd problematic customer, but it really shouldn't be coming from the organisers. Make sure you put it on the feedback form when it comes through.

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2 minutes ago, Paul ™ said:

Who was it shouting at you? Did you get a name/position? 

He told me his name and position and I remember his name, but I’ve no wish to follow it up tbh. It was just the contrast between poor customer service in all the areas that mattered, & then making a fuss about that. 

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2 hours ago, glimmers_of_hope said:

Does anyone know when there will be any data about whether there was an increase of covid cases due to the festival. I'm really interested to see what the results are. I would have thought it will be 5 to 10 days at least but don't know how these things work. 

None of us have been asked to provide any follow up info now we’re home from a “pilot”.

Melvin has friends in high places and that’s quite clearly why Latitude was given the go ahead

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Yeah was asked to do a PCR after the last test event I went to; wasn’t this time.

I requested one anyway, which has just come back negative, so happy days. 
 

If it’s anything like the football I suspect we’ll get an idea over the weekend of there was an impact. Forgot what the download pilot findings where but that was obviously way smaller and lower prevalence.

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I had all three shifts doing the covid screening in the General Campervan field (I'll get an arena shift one day, surely) and it never really got that busy. We ended up having to Hotspot people a few times to get them on the NHS app. Only had a couple of awkward customers, one a very angry woman who was pissed off she couldn't use her card as proof. Fair enough, it's about as secure as showing a negative LFT text message but they were told before (and told to screenshot the app because of the shit mobile coverage). She was genuinely furious, the kind of angry that could knock a less confident steward, but the guy she shouted at has done it for ages so wasn't bothered. "I have my card, I have cancer(!?) and I just want to get in to this fucking festival". I'm working Wilderness next which isn't a test event but is using the same system. And I'm told the mobile coverage is even worse.

The second was an old fella who'd actually been through the day before but came back to tell me that the whole thing was a scam as no one was actually checking anyone's covid status as he wasn't checked. It was all a conspiracy by the government to make it look like things were all OK. As a lowly volunteer steward (not even a supervisor this time) government conspiracies are a little above my paygrade. But then I would say that wouldn't I? He was harmless enough, and to be honest entertained me for a few minutes during a fairly dull shift. I pointed out that was literally why we were there, and offered to let him stay and watch us check people as they came through, but he seemed less bothered by this point. Especially when his wife pointed out she had been checked! So if he'd just mentioned it to her he could have saved himself the time!

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I was really lucky with the shifts I got & I did value it. I hope you have better luck at Wilderness!

Although it can be a great gig, I do think they should give arena platform shifts to the same people all weekend. It was really noticeable that security on the arena platform had really got to know their customers and became able to meet their needs and communicate with them really well. I turned up halfway through the final shift and felt like I was miles behind where I should have been in terms of looking after people well.

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1 hour ago, philipsteak said:

I'm working Wilderness next which isn't a test event but is using the same system. And I'm told the mobile coverage is even worse.

It certainly has been, for me at least. Last time out, it wasn't even a case of "I can't get data", it was more "the network has disappeared entirely". Should be fun trying to get people through the gates..

Still, it's been confirmed that there's no night shifts again this year..

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38 minutes ago, amfy said:

I was really lucky with the shifts I got & I did value it. I hope you have better luck at Wilderness!

Although it can be a great gig, I do think they should give arena platform shifts to the same people all weekend. It was really noticeable that security on the arena platform had really got to know their customers and became able to meet their needs and communicate with them really well. I turned up halfway through the final shift and felt like I was miles behind where I should have been in terms of looking after people well.

I can't complain too much, I got earlies this year and no night shift. Still, would be nice though...

I heard of a couple of friends who got Friday, Saturday, Sunday evening shifts, which if true is just brutal. 

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22 hours ago, Copperface said:

As a self confessed Plastic Mermaids nutter I've been following her in parallel with PM. Rhain (Rhian), Flo and Hester were and are the main collaborators with PM and form the backbone of the choir/backing singers that accompany PM on tour and live. Rhain normally sings the 'Saturn' intro live as well as other bits. She has a proper powerful operatic voice, diametrically opposed to what you get with Wet Leg. Think they had a song called 'Girlfriend' out last year which got wiped from everywhere (no idea why). So not actually in Plastic Mermaids but all from the IoW and work closely with them.

Yeah - there are lots of IOW connections with Wet Leg. The bass player has played with Lauran Hibberd's band (another IOW artist) before.

Considering the size, Isle of Wight is doing the business at the moment: Wet Leg, Lauran Hibberd, Plastic Mermaids, Coach Party, Roberta Fidora all doing good stuff.

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Does anyone know of anyone who got COVID during or after the festival? I've got zero symptoms and taken three LFTs in three days, just to see and absolutely nothing. Which is obviously great. And I made sure that I mixed it up whilst there, just like a normal pre-pandemic event. Hugs with strangers, no social distancing, moshing with the kids in the weird DnB caravan, the lot. With the way transmission was in the UK this time last week, I was prepared for the elevated risk of contracting it but I figured I'd let the double-jab reduce the effects, if so. The only ill-effects that have been felt from the festival are to my bank account! 

I really hope that this is a good sign for festivals and other events going forward.

 

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35 minutes ago, Supernintendo Chalmers said:

Does anyone know of anyone who got COVID during or after the festival? I've got zero symptoms and taken three LFTs in three days, just to see and absolutely nothing. Which is obviously great. And I made sure that I mixed it up whilst there, just like a normal pre-pandemic event. Hugs with strangers, no social distancing, moshing with the kids in the weird DnB caravan, the lot. With the way transmission was in the UK this time last week, I was prepared for the elevated risk of contracting it but I figured I'd let the double-jab reduce the effects, if so. The only ill-effects that have been felt from the festival are to my bank account! 

I really hope that this is a good sign for festivals and other events going forward.

 

I know of one person who tested positive on the Friday and had to go home. They were devastated obviously. Not heard of anyone since. My LFT yesterday was negative 

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On 7/26/2021 at 4:35 PM, Homer said:

Sounds much better than watching him sing his 'own' sh1t songs! What did he do? Am guessing the Foo Fighters was in there?

No Foo Fighters (that I remember!) but we got a fun version of Get Lucky (sound of the summer, I'm telling you), Rick doing the drums to to Highway to Hell and a song that involved splitting the crowd in half to sing 'Monkey Sh1t, Gravel Dirt' - continued to sing that all weekend. 

On stage he's a thoroughly charming and funny bloke - the worst thing about him is definitely his own songs!

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