There was once a time when music festivals were all about . . . well, music. Try telling that to punters at this weekend’s Wilderness festival. The three-day gathering, held at scenic Cornbury Park, Charlbury, may offer a pretty packed line-up of bands and artists, but that’s not the half of it. In fact, it’s safe to say, it’s not even the quarter of it.

One could quite happily spend the entire festival — billed as a celebration of creativity in the great outdoors — without seeing a single band.

Wilderness, which begins tomorrow, was first held last year, and proved the surprise hit of the summer — practically selling-out in its first year.

This year’s event has expanded substantially, and even incorporates the Vintage Festival, Wayne Hemingway’s celebration of all things sartorially lovely, which was moved to Cornbury from its home in Northamptonshire to rescue it from poor ticket sales.

No such problems affect Wilderness, of course. A bill including Spiritualized, Wilco, Rodrigo y Gabriela, Crystal Fighters, Jake Bugg, Sharon Jones, the Temper Trap and Stornoway ensure it attracts the serious music fans, and an array of top chefs, including Yotem Ottolenghi, Valentine Warner, Fergus Henderson, and Sam & Sam Clark from Moro, will pull in the foodies with banquets and demonstrations.

Theatre from the likes of Creation and the Old Vic Tunnels (pictured, above, in action last year), film from Future Cinema, and art from The Drawing Room, will appeal to creative types, while fans of the outdoors can get closer to nature with rambles, foraging expeditions, bush craft demonstrations, wild swimming and even horse riding.

And if it all seems a little too much, festival-goers can wander down to the Sanctuary lakeside spa for natural rejuvenation in its hot tubs, plunge pool, saunas and champagne bars, before indulging in massage, reflexology, acupuncture, holistic healing and pampering. It sounds too good to be true. But it’s right on our doorstep.

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