This year was our first year at Camp Bestival. I have to admit the idea of camping with my youngest who has development delay, was one that was causing us to worry. Getting him to wind down and settle at home can be hard sometimes and we weren’t sure if wed be able to get him to settle. Initially we booked a hotel for the stay and had planned to travel each day from the hotel to the festival and then back each night. We knew sadly this might of meant we’d miss out on some bits and maybe not get the full festival experience but we didn’t feel we had a choice.
That wasn’t until a good friend of mine informed me that there was a disabled camping section at Camp Bestival, something which until that point we didn’t know was offered. We instantly felt better knowing this and in turn got a refund on the hotel and decided to try out the disabled camping at Camp Bestival.
Spite being giving a pitch in disabled camping, we decided we would still travel up Thursday so we could be there the day before to set up our tent, unpack and relax . Upon arrival we were directed to the White gate which was the entrance for disabled camping. The staff gave us a lovely welcome and were really helpful, they informed us of where best to pitch our tent as we arrived fairly early they asked if we would stick to the edge of the perimeter which was fine with us. They also advised us on where to pick up our wrist bands for the weekend and the personal assistant pass.
We were happily surprised once we’d pitched up our tent in Disabled Camping when we realised the campsite was located next to the Lower Kids Garden, which was where the little ones ended up spending a lot of their time whilst there. Each person is Allocated a 7m x 5m pitch in which they can pitch there tent and car if they have a blue badge, the pitch was plenty big enough for our Skandika Nizza tent. There’s also a few extras that you can get if needed too. You can request an electric hook up if its need for medical reasons or if you have medication that you need to keep in the fridge you can store it in the one in the medical tent which is located Magic Meadow Field.
In the disabled camp site itself there are disabled toilets, disabled showers and charging points for electric wheelchair users. We found the toilets and showers both good to use, they weren’t placed too far from our tent and the ques weren’t as long as I expected them to be if I’m honest. The toilets were reasonably clean for a festival and kept well stocked with toilet roll. The showers were a bit fiddly to use, but once you figure out the right settings there lovely and warm to use. If you plan your timing right then you can mange to at least have a shower at least twice whilst there, I personally found the middle of the day the best time, as everyone was out doing things so the shower area was fairly quiet.Overall I’m so happy that we discovered that Camp Bestival offered disabled camping and camped there rather than staying the hotel we’d originally booked. It really did make for a less stressful camping trip and made the whole experience of Camp Bestival a incredible one. If you have a a little one or bigger one that you think would love to go to Camp Bestival but are a little put off or worried about taking them due to a disability, I’d definitely recommend applying for a spot in disabled camping. We hope to return again in 2017 and if we do or at all in the future we would definitely choose to camp in disabled camping again.
How To Apply
Accessible Camping is Available to ticket holders who have been accepted for a Personal Assistant pass (details on how to apply for a PA pass can be found below). You will be sent the application form once your PA pass has been accepted. Places in Accessible Camping are allocated on a first come first serve basis and fill up quickly, so don’t delay applying.
If you do not have a PA pass, but feel you should still be able to camp in accessible camping please email email@example.com
Camp Bestival attendees who require assistance throughout the festival are entitled to one free pass for the personal assistant or support worker (The person with the disability must have a ticket)
In Camp Bestivals commitment to make Camp Bestival accessible to everyone, they may provide Deaf or Disabled ticket holders that would be unable to attend without use of a personal assistant and are in reciept of one or more of the following, with a ticket at no additional cost for one PA.
Middle Rate or High rate DLA for care or mobility
Receipt of Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
Evidence of being severly sight impaired
Credibility Access Card – + 1 category requirement
A recognised Assistance Dog ID Card
For more Info and How to apply click here