Johana BaldellaJohana BaldellaApril 12, 2017


 It’s that time of year again, the denim shorts are at the ready, along with a multi coloured raincoat and the all-important wellies… it’s festival season! For many, festivals involve days on the trot of boozing, eating calorific irregular meals and way more dancing than shut-eye. For those who want to stay even slightly on track to staying healthy, what can you do?


1. Dance proof your feet with the right shoes 

“Choosing the right shoes is extremely important. Make sure there is enough room in the front of your shoes (the toe box) to wiggle your toes freely – this is really important and not just for comfort. If the shoe is too tight here then you put yourself at risk of compression lesions, such as corns and callous. Your longest toe should finish about 15 – 20mm from the end of the shoe (roughly the width of your own thumb).

Also, before you head to your favourite DJ slip Carnation Tip Toes Gel Cushions (£4.49, Firstaidfast.co.uk and Independent Pharmacies) into your shoes for extra comfort,  “These invisible gel cushions will help to alleviate pressure, providing padding for your shoes,” explains Michael Ratcliffe, Podiatrist at Carnation Footcare.


2. Rise and shine with a downward dog

Before you head to a stage in the morning, do a spot of yoga. “The movement of yoga will help to increase blood flow to all parts of your body, but importantly, your liver. The more blood that passes through, the quicker your liver can detoxify the alcohol. The sweating will help to eliminate the toxins through your skin. However the sweating can make the problem of dehydration worse, so ensure that you drink plenty of water at the same time!” says Shona Wilkinson, Nutritionist at SuperfoodUK, the online shopping destination for all things health and wellbeing.

3.  Avoid sugar, before, during and after

‘Before, during and after drinking it’s best to avoid sugary foods and drinks, as alcohol consumption tends to play havoc with energy and blood sugar control. It’s better to focus on protein and unrefined carbohydrates, which release glucose slowly. Say no to caffeine and spicy food that can not only worsen the dehydration, but also irritate your stomach,’ explains Dr Marilyn Glenville, the UK’s leading Nutritionist, author of Natural Alternatives to Sugar.

If you’re struggling not to be tempted by sugary snacks try Slissie. Slissie (£39.99, www.slissie.co.uk) is the first of its kind as it delivers curb-craving flavourings that instantly help you resist snack temptation. Slissie releases tasty, appetite-suppressing flavours, from vanilla to chocolate, which can help you resist eating things you know you really shouldn’t.


4. Dance to the beat with festival feet 

If wellingtons are your footwear of choice, so you can dance your way through the mud, Carnation Silversocks (www.firstaidfast.co.uk, £12) are a great option for eliminating odour and reducing rubbing. The thermodynamic sock is made with pure silver fibres that, as well as keeping feet at a comfortable temperature have anti-microbial and anti-odour properties. The yarn systems allows a greater amount of moisture to be drawn away from the feet so those 250,000 sweat glands would have to be working overtime to leave you with damp tootsies.


5. Watch what you eat!!

“Try to avoid burnt barbecued meat in particular, as this is likely to make any hangover worse!  Look for meals that come with a good amount of salad or other vegetables, or try to get in some fresh fruit between meals – for fibre and vitamin C.  Take with you some protein-based snacks, such as nuts and raisins,” says Shona.


6. Sleep well


“To make sure you sleep as much and as well as you can, stop any alcohol a few hours before you go to bed and try to give yourself time to wind down before hitting the pillow.  I’d also recommend taking KalmAssure Magnesium Powder, by Natures Plus (£24.50, www.naturesplus.co.uk). This is a naturally chelated magnesium which is very easy to absorb and easily delivered to the tissues,” suggests Nutritionist, Cassandra Barns.


7. Stay hydrated

“Make sure you drink plenty of water throughout the day, to help maintain energy levels and a clear head, and because dehydration will only worsen the effects of any alcohol you drink later on!” says Shona.


8. ‘B’ energised


“B vitamins are helpful to reduce tiredness and fatigue. To make sure you’re getting your daily dose take Quest Vitamins Once A Day Energy B & C (from £5.32, qnutrapharma.com) before you go to boost energy levels ready for the festival and continue taking it to keep fatigue at bay,” suggests Cassandra.





9. Combat chafing

“Chafing occurs from friction, so when thighs rub against each other or shoes you’re wearing start to rub your heel friction is caused, which can then lead to chaffing. Friction worsens with heat, humidity and perspiration so if you’re working up a sweat you may be prone to chafing, which can range from rashes, to burning to blisters. To soothe the skin I would suggest using a quick dry formula, such as the What Skin Needs Balm (£9.99, whatskinneeds.co.uk) which uses a blend of natural ingredients, including aloe vera which will help soothe the skin and prevent irritations and rashes from developing,” explains Cassandra.




10. Get fruity with it!

The water and mineral content of fruit will help to rehydrate you and put an end to your hangover headache. Opt for berries, “They are rich in antioxidants and offer protection from free radicals, which are considered another cause of hangovers,” says Cassandra.



Benjamin VogtBenjamin VogtFebruary 20, 2014


Historic Royal Palaces and PWR Events are thrilled to announce the complete line up for this years Hampton Court Palace Festival; George Benson, The Beach Boys, Dionne Warwick, Jamie Cullum, Rick Astley & Jason Donovan, Jools Holland and the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra will all perform in Henry VIII’s open air courtyard. The Festival runs from 11th to 25th June and tickets are on sale now.

The ten-time Grammy award-winner George Benson will perform hits from his impressive back catalogue including Give Me The Night, Lady Love Me (One More Time) and Turn Your Love Around on 23rd June as well as songs from his latest album Inspiration: A Tribute to Nat King Cole.

The Beach Boys who are known as the ultimate American rock band from California will be gracing the audience with their musical talents on 24th June with an extra performance 25th June due to popular demand. Known for their top hits including: Good Vibrations, Wouldn’t It Be Nice and Surfs Up, The Beach Boys have sold in excess of 100 million records worldwide. With 28 studio albums and 4 live albums to choose from we are sure they will not disappoint.

We are thrilled that legendary singer and 5-time Grammy Award winner Dionne Warwick will perform on 13th June. On confirming her slot at the Festival, Warwick said:


“I am thrilled and look forward to coming back to the UK this summer as this will be my first performance at Hampton Court Palace Festival!  I am told that it is such a special and unique experience and, of course, all will be treated to a concert of favorite songs that will be familiar to their ears and also a few new ones from my recently released 50th Anniversary album, “NOW!”


Warwick’s career, which currently celebrates 50 years, has established her as an international music icon and concert act. She has earned more than sixty charted hit songs including Walk on By, Do you know the way to San Jose and Heartbreaker, and has sold over 100 million records.

The most successful UK jazz artist ever, Jamie Cullum will make his Festival debut on 17th June. With a Grammy, two Golden Globes, two BRITs, GQ Music Man of the Year, Sony Radio Award under his belt, Jamie will treat the audience to his classic hits and songs from his new album Momentum.

On 20th June, pop sensations Rick Astley and Jason Donovan will perform a double-header singing all their big hits. On confirming his slot at the Festival, Rick said:


“I am overjoyed to be playing at Hampton Court Palace this year. I’ve just moved and now live four minutes away, so Jason and I are going to have a garden party before the concert. It’ll be like a home gig and the perfect way you start the summer.”


Pop sensation Rick Astley rose to fame in the 1980s and dominated the charts around the world. He still holds the record of being the only male solo artist to have his first 8 singles reach the UK Top Ten and in 2008 he won Best Act Ever at the MTV Europe Music Awards. Rick’s unique soulful and engaging performance continues to wow audiences wherever he goes. We look forward to an evening of all the hits, including the song that shot him to fame Never Gonna Give You Up.

Star of stage and screen Jason Donovan has had a glittering career since the days of Neighbours and his subsequent success in the world of pop music. Since that time, he has rarely been away from stage or screen including leading stage roles in Joseph, The Rocky Horror Show, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Priscilla and The Sound of Music. Jason continues to be a well-loved household name, and delighted TV audiences by reaching the Strictly Come Dancing final, as well as being mentor and judge on ITV’s Superstar. Jason will treat us to classic hits including Sealed with a Kiss and Nothing Can Divide Us.

In addition, there will be an enchanting night of opera on 21st June. The Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra will present a special midsummer concert conducted by Renato Balsadonna and featuring the beautiful voices of soprano Deborah Norman and rising star Noah Stewart.

Always a sellout favorite at the Festival, Jools Holland will open the summer concerts. His passion for music has made him a doyen of the music scene, and he was awarded an OBE in 2003 for his services to the British music industry. Jools’ phenomenal success has seen him sell millions of records throughout the course of his career and he holds the unique status of performing with musicians who have achieved success in every decade of the 20th Century. He will be joined by the fantastic Gilson Lavis and special guests include Melanie C and Marc Almond and guest vocalists Ruby Turner and Louise Marshall who together with Jools and his fantastic Rhythm & Blues Orchestra will raise the roof of the magnificent Palace once again.

The Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra also returns to the Festival for another spectacular classical evening. Conducted by Ben Palmer, the Orchestra will perform scores from the mainstream masters of classical music: from Mozart to Tchaikovsky, Grieg to Elgar and Debusy to Strauss. A fireworks display will provide a visual fanfare to round off this superb evening.

Hampton Court Palace Festival is renowned for creating a truly unforgettable experience. Artists perform in the historic main courtyard of the magnificent Tudor Palace providing an intimate atmosphere for an audience of 3,000. VIP Packages are available in the State Apartments and Festival-goers can also arrive early (doors open at 5.30pm) to enjoy picnics on the Palace Garden lawn or underneath a luxury waterside gazebo before the show.

LaurencelaurenceSeptember 21, 2012


Chelsea Monthly gets to talk to Siddy Bennett, the frontwoman, singer and writer for the band ‘Wildflowers’.


Hello Wildflowers, to give our readers some context could you introduce yourselves and excuse the pun, talk about the roots of Wildflowers?

Ok, Hi everyone, we are a country rock n roll band from Brighton, someone recently labelled us “Punky Dolly Parton” which is fitting. Wildflowers began in early 2012, The sound of the band derives from James (guitarist/mandolin player) and I, who have been playing live and writing songs together for around 4 years and also my sister Kit, who plays keys and accordion. Her backing vocals are very crucial and we have been singing together as far back as I can remember.

Siddy, you’re quite the lyricist. Are there messages behind the lyrics? What kind of things moves you to write?

There’s always message behind the lyrics, sometimes it’s as simple as; get out of my house, other songs are more complex exploring issues like religion, addiction, abuse, politics, all this with a fun bouncy beat behind it. (Are you getting the Punky Dolly Parton vibe now?). I guess the message behind the band is: don’t take any shit from anybody, have fun, and live life.

What kind of gigs have you been playing lately? Any festivals? Where’s your favourite place to play?

We are about to head to Brisfest where we are playing on the same stage as “De la Soul” (massive hip hop legends) I seriously can’t wait for that. I’m a bit of a festival addict, so they are definitely my favourite places to play. I played Glastonbury last year and that was just out of this world.  It’s basically a city of tents.

 What are the main challenges for an up and coming artist at the moment? What have you done / are you doing to overcome them?

The biggest challenge/ problem is bad promoters. They book young bands in from out of town, to a night they haven’t promoted at all, so nobody is there to watch them. Or they only offer the slot to a band that can guarantee bringing 50 people to the gig. Well if this isn’t in your local area how are you supposed to do that? I really hate small time promoters like that. They don’t have a passion for music; they just want to line their pockets with the venues money. I overcame this by promoting my own nights, I’ve just started a monthly night called Route 66 at The Prince Albert, Brighton) It’s inspired by the flower powers greats of the 60’s, like Janis Joplin etc. My aim is just to get like-minded music lovers together for a good time. It’s kind of a tiny festival, with handpicked great bands (including Wildflowers), bunting, hay bales and good cider.

Who are your main influences, if you could play a super gig with any artist alive or dead, who would it be?

I would have to go with the Levellers. We were brought up on them, and whenever I’m feeling down, I put “Levelling the Land” on and immediately sort my self out. I think Mark Chadwick is a poet.

Do you perform in public, busking, street performances, or anything different like that? Birthdays, schools, weddings?

All the time, when we were trying to break venues in Brighton, we went round all the open mics to get heard by the venue. One night, they couldn’t let us on because it was too overcrowded, so we just played in the street and everyone came outside. I am also known for stage crashing at festivals, I always manage to get a sneaky slot! At Strummer of Love this year we played for about 5 hours through the night. By the end people had made us repeat some of our songs so much that thy all new the words! It was amazing.

 How do you and the band all balance life and music? Where do you find the time for rehearsing and gigging.

I don’t balance it! I live for the band. I literally put all my time into this band. I’m very lucky because all my friends and family also believe in it, so we all club together. My boyfriend does all the artwork and driving, My friend has designed the website, another has made our music video. Other friends always help promote it/ get people sign the mailing list at gigs. Even my mum has recently re located to Brighton so she can help me organise everything. I love that DIY ethos, I think you get what you want when its people who know you doing your work. I have always believed that this is what I would be doing, and never once tried to do or be anything else. I think life is about taking those leaps of faith, otherwise you will be stuck doing something you hate.

Finally, where can we find Wildflowers growing in the future? 

America! Because wildflowers have country roots, (HA) we have had a lot of positive feedback from America, so we want to head there. We are planning to tour in Silver Bullet trailers, busses and campervans and stay in campsites instead of Hotels. I just want to live like I’m in 1966. Anyone who feels the same should come along, It would be so amazing to road trip round America with like minded people who just want to be free and have some fun.



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