The Definitive Guide to Working British Festivals

The Definitive Guide to Working British Festivals

With festival season slowly approaching, now is the time for you to apply to work at some of the biggest festivals the UK boasts, including Latitude, Reading & Leeds, Parklife and Download. Although this year is a fallow year for Glastonbury, last year they had a staggering 175,000 attendees – so you can see how imperative it is that every event has enough staff to run as smoothly as possible. The UK has tonnes of companies you can work at festivals with – whether that’s volunteering through a charity such as Oxfam, or using a company that pays you to work such as DC Site Services.


What roles can you work at a festival?

Depending on the festival you will be working for, there are tonnes of jobs you can do. All aspects of the event need staff, so you could work in:

·      Stewarding / Security

·      Bar Work

·      Information Staff

·      Selling Merchandise

·      Litter Cleaner

·      Campsite Staff

·      Wristband Duties

·      Car and Coach Park Attendants

·      Gate Staff

·      Medical Staff


What are the benefits of working at a festival?

Skillset: Just from working over the weekend at a festival, you can develop an array of skills such as customer service, dedication and time management. These skills look great to future employers as you have experience with dealing and communicating with a variety of people across the festival.

Save/Earn Money: When you work or volunteer at a festival, you will get your ticket free. With tickets for some of the biggest festivals equalling up to a few hundred pounds, it’s a great opportunity for you to go to the festival without coughing up the dough. More often than not, you will be working shifts throughout the weekend, which means you can spend your spare time seeing acts and live music across the festival itself!

Meet New People: Hundreds of people volunteer at festivals all the time and it’s such a great way to meet like-minded people. The down time at a festival (when you’re not working) is a great opportunity for you to meet people who have come from up and down the country to volunteer/work alongside you at the festival!


Some Top Tips

Go Early

Get up to the campsite as early as you can. When you arrive before all the ticket-holders, the atmosphere is special, and you can see the infrastructure grow from nothing. As more people come through and begin setting up at campsites, you can feel the excitement develop – and you’ll have been there from the very beginning! It’s also a great chance for you to meet other workers, and a lot of companies deal their shifts out on a ‘first-come, first-served’ basis so if you want the best shifts... GO EARLY!!

Pack Appropriately

Although it might be summer and warm in the day – make sure you pack appropriately! Until you know what shifts you’re doing at the festival, it’s difficult to know what you should be wearing. For example, litter picking during the day might be very hot as you’re in the sun all day, however litter picking during the night will be freezing. Take a mixture of clothes, including jumpers so that you can put them on when it starts getting cooler in the evening. Make sure you take WATERPROOF SHOES!! The amount of mud at any festival is unbelievable – and you may be working right in it.

Don’t Take Anything You Can’t Replace

Although when working at a festival, you’ll probably have better security than the average ticket-holder, you still shouldn’t take anything too expensive or irreplaceable to the festival. With thousands of people attending, it’s very easy to lose valuables. Many festivals also have pickpockets and thieves – so be careful of those too.

Be Positive and HAVE FUN!!

When all you want to do is get involved and see some great artists, it can be slightly irritating having to serve drunk people at the bar all day. It’s important that you stay positive!! You won’t be working the whole time that you’re there and you will have your downtime too so remember this and have a laugh with your colleagues!!


So get your applications in and let us know what festivals you’re going to be working at this year!


Jessica Greaney
Digital Marketer
0121 244 5004