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Party like a rockstar with the boss at Cornbury Music Festival

PUBLISHED: 14:21 20 February 2018 | UPDATED: 14:21 20 February 2018

Amanda Rolls, Hospitality Director, Cornbury Festival

Amanda Rolls, Hospitality Director, Cornbury Festival


Teambuilding days? A glittering Christmas party? No, what your staff really want is a weekend at a festival. Amanda Rolls, Barrister-turned-Hospitality Director at Cornbury Festival, explains why more and more top firms are talking tents

In early 2006 I was sitting in my Cotswold kitchen when the phone rang.

“Hi, it’s Hugh Phillimore here from the Cornbury Festival. I’d like to offer you a job”. I was on a sabbatical from being a legal eagle and thought...”Why not?”.

Twelve years later I can’t imagine not being part of the family that is the Cornbury team. Everyone who helps put Cornbury together genuinely trusts, cares about, and looks out for each other and I think that is what makes Cornbury unique.

All our guests become part of that family for a weekend and bring their own families to a festival that caters for their needs.

Cornbury Festival's VIP areaCornbury Festival's VIP area

It truly is a case of Glastonbury meets Glyndebourne.

As our VIP area grew in popularity we realised there was a need for exclusive Club Tents to offer guests a private sanctuary away from the crowds. The unique location of the Club tents gives our guests the option to immerse themselves in the main arena and soak up the atmosphere front of stage or kick back behind their white picket fence, glass of Champagne in hand and chill out on a sofa or in their private garden and enjoy the eclectic line up of artists from there.

We find that more and more of our Club tent guests include families. Gone are the days of the corporate events limited to employees only. Businesses want their valued employees and their families to be included and joining our Cornbury family for the weekend is the perfect choice.

We have hosted numerous events for our guests over the years including a wedding reception, birthday parties, corporate days out and summer parties. One group even brought their own butler along.

Cornbury Festival's VIP hospitality areaCornbury Festival's VIP hospitality area

Anything goes at Cornbury as we start with an empty field each year, once the sheep have vacated. We build the festival from the ground upwards – we even mow the lawn for our VIP and Club Tent guests.

I handle each booking personally from start to finish, with the help of my amazing team. The rest of the year I am a divorce lawyer in a practice in Mayfair and Wiltshire so I am used to dealing with clients and working under pressure.

It is the perfect work balance for me as, at the law firm I am dealing with individuals who are facing one of the moss stressful experiences of their lives and at Cornbury I am dealing with guests who are relaxed and happy.

The key element to both is empathy and kindness with a huge helping of efficiency.

One of our regular clients is a design consultancy based near Witney. This is what they had to say about their summer party in one of our Club tents:

“We chose the Cornbury Festival for our staff summer event for the past two years and had a wonderful time on both occasions. We found the team very helpful from the initial booking right through to the on-the-day service in our corporate tent.

“The result was our whole team including their families had a very relaxed day enjoying the music, vast range of food stalls as well as the different areas.

“We would be happy to recommend this event for a great day out.”

Another client is a financial advisory business based in Canterbury. They take a tent for both days and stay on site in our amazing glamping area:

“Thank you so much for everything you and your team did for us at the weekend,” they wrote. “We all had an unbelievable time, everyone was full of compliments and there’s already conversations starting about coming back next year. The club tent was fabulous, we were so lucky to have such a prime position to see Bryan Adams, which was definitely a highlight for me. I also loved Jools Holland and the Pretenders on the Sunday, however my voice box didn’t so much yesterday!

“Thank you so much for all of your relentless hard work in organising us/our food/our guests so smoothly. It really was fabulous, here’s to next year.”

They are great fans of Cornbury and have already booked again for two days this year.

Artists rumoured to be appearing include UB40, Squeeze and the Beach Boys.

As Festival Promoter and organiser, Hugh Phillimore says “The Cornbury Music Festival is one-of-a-kind: a lovingly crafted, top notch, very English open air party, tailor-made for the whole family.

“A quintessentially British country fair with a rock ‘n’ roll twist; a farmers’ market with a dance floor; a local carnival with a classic contemporary soundtrack.”

To make a Club tent booking and become part of our family for the weekend, contact me at Amanda@cornburyfestival.com.

Cornbury Music Festival will be taking place on July 13, 14 and 15 2018 at the Great Tew Park, Oxfordshire.

Keep up to date with the Cornbury Music Festival line-up here.

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