Stagg dos and don’ts: a response to the Telegraph’s festival tips

Crowds at Isle Of Wight Festival 2007 by Marc Broussely
Crowds at Isle Of Wight Festival 2007 by Marc Broussely

Forget Beyonce, Eminem or the Arctic Monkeys, the one person to look out for this summer is music festival stalwart, Guy Stagg!

“Who?” you may cry! Why, he’s the author of the Top ten festival tips article in the Telegraph; a real outdoor warrior, last spotted at Glasto ’71 with Ray Mears as they put together a makeshift tent with just disused burger boxes and a torn CND flag.

These days though, Stagg will be found snoozing in swimshorts, shoes and a straw hat with the ink from his hand-scribbled ‘help!’ note running as wildly as his kids.

In his, quite frankly, laughable nuggets of advice, Stagg suggests: “DO take a pen and paper – Pens never run out of batteries”, and “DO wear fancy dress with caution […] you might think you look fantastic, you will spend the rest of your life living down photographs which prove, with no uncertainty, that you were wrong.”

What festival has this man ever been to? What festival has anybody been to that requires a hat that “will protect your face from the sun” (a cap), “will keep your head warm at night” (a woolly hat) and “is silly enough, your friends will be able to pick you out of a crowd” (a tw-hat).

Look, it’s a festival not a war zone expedition or a weekend at Butlins, you’re only likely to be away for three-days!

So, instead of a full ten (we all learn what best suits our type of festival-going as we go along), here are five basic tips for festivals.

Take the essentials
If you’re camping, take a tent and a sleeping bag at least. Extra clothes can become a makeshift pillow and add extra warmth.

A change of clothes
Yes, the weather can change. So look at the forecast and take what you might need, be it shorts and flip flop or wellies and waterproofs. If it’s hot in the day, a clear night sky is likely to be cold – so always take a jumper or coat.

Drink and eat
It’s easy to get over excited and forget that you haven’t eaten food or had any water all day but, just as if you’re at home, eat and drink when you need to.

Don’t take anything you can’t afford to lose
This means if you’re going to take your iPhone or iPod and can’t afford to lose it: don’t pack it! If you want to take a phone, buy a cheap one just for the weekend. Always have some money on you and take a card to get more out if you need it.

Enjoy yourself!
It might be wet and you might have missed your favourite band, but really, is it the end of the world? These are the best weekends of the summer, so take a step back, look around, smile and grab another beer and please, whatever you do, don’t take a pen and paper.