Black Mountain at The Good Life Experience 2018

A day after The Good Life Experience (TGLE) our Instagram post read,

“We had such a good time @goodlifeexperience. We can’t wait to go back! We met some amazing people, some super cool kids and even the odd celebrity. We listened to inspiring talks, watched great chefs cook, and witnessed first hand the super energy of the Go Team... why can’t every weekend be like this!?” 

And that just about sums it up. TGLE takes place every September on the Hawarden Estate in North Wales and it’s a festival of music, culture, food and the great outdoors brought to you by Cerys Matthews (Radio 6, Catatonia, “horse’s heads in people’s beds”!), Steve Abbott (Cerys’ husband) and Charlie and Caroline Gladstone (super cool owners of the estate who totally encapsulate the ‘Good Life’).
The Good Life Experience clay models

The whole thing has a very laid back, family and friendly vibe. It is very much about doing things, whether that’s making a bow and arrow, throwing a pot (or an axe), screen printing a T-shirt, listening to talks on all sorts of subjects, watching world class chefs cooking over an open fire (and only ever an open fire at TGLE), boozing, dancing, walking on hot coals, talking… the list is almost endless.

Music plays a major part of the festival too, but you are unlikely to find the likes of Coldplay, U2 or an AC/DC tribute band playing, there is more of an eclectic mix on offer. From the magical craziness of Gwenno, to the ever-smiling Rajasthan Heritage Brass Band, DJs like Trevor Nelson, Norman Jay and Greg Wilson (the ground was vibrating miles away, the local earth worms must have wondered what the hell was going on), to the wholly uplifting Go Team with their multi instrumentalists and hip hop beat… and everything in between.

TGLE is a place to take your time, a place to become absorbed in. You can be entertained but you can also learn stuff there too. It’s all very human, very positive. I’d most probably like to live ‘in’ TGLE all the time!

I guess I should say that we had a stand there with all of our bikes in the Outdoor Market Place, and that we chatted to loads of very cool and interesting people. The bikes went down a storm. By the end of the weekend the team was totally knackered but I personally felt totally re-energised by the whole thing. Without getting all hippy dippy on you, the positive vibe was strong and continues to this day.

Regrets? I’ve got a few. We missed out on swimming in the lake, and I missed Cerys Mathews when she visited our stand! Next year!

We’d just like to say a big thanks to everyone who made it happen (from the front of house to the back room staff), to all the festival goes and to our fellow ‘stallholders’. We are already looking forward to next year.

 Mike... and Phil and Lauren too.