The 2019 Idler Festival is rapidly approaching, with limited numbers of Tier Two tickets available after the record sellout of our Early Bird weekend passes. We can happily announce that our headliners include punk poet John Cooper Clarke, comedy legend Sally Phillips, dancehall pioneer Youth and many more still to come. Our beautiful new poster, designed by illustration wizard and art director of the Idler Alice Smith, is getting us in the mood for merriment. Tickets can be found here, but move quickly as the reduced price of £90 only lasts while we have Tier Two passes in stock. This ticket will give you access to the festival for the full weekend, including all talks, workshops and concerts within the grounds. Guests can also expect intimate salons for philosophical discussion around Fenton House, dancing and music in the gardens and the Idler’s pick of sustainable and delicious food and drink. Last year our headline speaker Michael Palin said of the festival:
‘The Idler Festival is an Arcadian idyll. A beautiful house and garden embraces a whole host of activities. The ideas and talks are all the better for being aired in the open, and the home-made sausage rolls are the best this side of heaven. Immensely civilised…a balmy, magical atmosphere.’
As spring starts to show itself, if a little reluctantly, we hope that idlers everywhere will begin to dream of lounging in the sun with a bottle of beer and a good book. But it can sometimes seem impossible to break out of the exhausting commuter loop. The Idler Festival offers a remedy to our target obsessed, meticulously scheduled modern lives. What better way to spend a summer weekend than getting away from it all in the company of like-minded lazy folk?
Fenton House, our home for the festival, is a stunning venue full of fascinating history and boasts all the best things about the country with the accessibility and buzz of the big city. A brick mansion with a walled garden built for a wealthy merchant in the 17th century, Fenton is home to the Benton Fletcher collection of harpsichords, 17th-century needlework, a ceramics collection featuring Chinese and 18th-century pieces, formal lawns, a sunken rose garden, yew hedges, a 300-year-old orchard and a working kitchen garden. It was given to the National Trust by the last owner Lady Binning in 1952 and we are proud to return to it this year for our second Idler Festival.
Learn more about the house, gardens and history here.