Splendour 2019 had it all. Packed with stand-out sets from start to finish, the crowd were spoilt for choice and even the weather played ball after a sunshine and showers opening.
The Manic Street Preachers started their headlining set strewn with all their biggest hits with a statement of intent playing a blistering rendition of ‘Motorcycle Emptiness’. The setlist spanned their multiple albums and included ‘Your Love Alone’, ‘If You Tolerate This Your Children Will be Next’, ‘You Love Us’ and ‘A Design For Life’, showcasing why they’re still one of the most treasured British rock bands around. Their cover of Guns and Roses ‘Sweet Child of Mine’ had the crowd singing in unison and it was a welcome return to Nottingham after an absence of many years for the Welsh rockers.
Festival favourites The Specials were in fine fettle, playing a set of classics along with songs from their latest album ‘Encore’ which hit the top of the charts earlier this year. With the stage dressed with placards bearing socially conscious messages, they remain as relevant today as they did when they formed back in 1977.
A highlight for many was the set delivered by Rag’N’Bone Man who drew one of the biggest crowds of the day to the Main Stage. Cutting a striking figure with his tattoos and jewellery, his vocal capabilities are equally impressive and his distinct baritone voice had the crowd singing along. He was later spotted in the photo pit enjoying the performance from All Saints, headlining over on the Confetti Stage.
The all-female group’s harmonies were on song for numbers including ‘Under the Bridge’ and ‘Pure Shores’ and they even threw in some classic 90s dance moves to the delight of the crowd. Earlier in the day, the Confetti Stage delivered some true festival highlights with Fine Young Cannibals singer Roland Gift belying the years with a stellar performance of his group’s back catalogue.
Northern Irish band Ash proved just as popular as when they last played the festival 10 years ago with a hit strewn set including the classic ‘Oh Yeah’, join in now…’ it was the start of the summer’, and that’s exactly what it felt like.
Earlier in the day, the Future Sound of Nottingham opener Remy didn’t let the rain showers dampen his moment while homegrown singer-songwriter Rob Green brought the sunshine with a warmly received Main Stage set for the popular artist.
Former X Factor winner Louisa went down well with the crowd getting ready to party as the afternoon slipped into the evening. Singer-songwriter Barns Courtney got right into the heart of the action with a bit of crowd surfing in his set.
Away from the main music stages, it was glittertastic over at the GEM silent disco and the acoustic line-up of Nottingham acts over on the Courtyard Stage pulled in a big crowd throughout the day. The younger Splendour attendees had a blast in the jam-packed Little Splendours area, where there were plenty of activities to keep them entertained.
Special mention to Confetti Institute of Creative Technologies who had 100 students on site helping to set up, run and record each stage gaining valuable real life experience for future careers.
A total of 25,000 tickets were sold for the fastest-selling Splendour ever. Set in the lush grounds of Wollaton Hall and Deer Park, the festival hosted more than 40 acts across five stages. Spanning all musical genres, from fresh-faced talent to living legends, it was a hotly anticipated line-up that didn’t disappoint.
George Akins, DHP Family owner, said: “It’s great to see months of hard work pay off with a day that has gone down so well with a fantastic festival crowd, with a line-up that really ticked all the boxes. We love putting on what has become the most epic summer party in the whole of the East Midlands and can’t wait to start working on next year.”
Plans for Splendour 2020 will be announced later in the year. To hear the latest, sign up to the Splendour newsletter here.