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7 things we learnt at Secret Garden Party

Photos by Hannah Goodwin @InquisitiveEye

Secret Garden Party has been and gone – and what a party it was! To add a bit of CALM to we brought the usual chilled atmosphere: sofas, free tea and a wall of secrets. But we also upped our game considerably for the final year, with our own Torch Songs mini-stage and intimate half hour gigs from Annabel Allum, Tom Grennan, Croox, Ned Dylan, Haz, The King’s Parade and Alice Jemima! It was a weekend full of surprises, and not just the ridiculously temperamental weather. Here’s seven things we learnt at Secret Garden Party…


1. The King’s Parade have soul that even torrential rain can’t dampen

The four-piece spent a heroic hour lugging kit across the mud. When they plugged in and took off it was clear to all why thy’ve been marked as ones to watch for 2017. They call it ‘NuTown’ – a modern, poppy twist on Motown. You should go have a listen.

2. People love free stuff

Shocking I know. But the amount of beaming grateful faces you see in the morning, compared to say the faces you’d see on a mid-commute coffee stop… it’s heart-warming.


3. Ned Dylan is wise beyond his years

This young man is sixteen. 16! And not only can he can turn a hungover crowd into his own backing singers, he’s eloquent and annoyingly mature in conversation. Interview on the way…

4. We’ve all done naughtier things than running through fields of wheat

Our Tea and Secrets tent brought a skipload of confessions and proudest moments. A NSFW taster…

Greatest Secrets
“I slept with my best friend’s boyfriend.”
“I’ve had depression for 3/4 years, had an abortion, sister attempted suicide recently, but still doing A-levels and doing fine.”
“I haven’t changed my underwear the whole festival.”
“I used to finger myself on Omegle to old men because it turned me on.”
“When I was 10 I had a crush on my cousin.”

Proudest Moments
“Deciding to take a year off uni for mental health and being OK with it.”
“Being asked to play the main stage at Secret Garden Party.”
“Overcoming depression and finding peace.”
“Taking an eccie, falling asleep then pissing my pants last night.”


6. Tom Grennan has a voice to make grown men cry

This fella only took up singing three years back after his pro-football career didn’t turn out as expected (lucky for us!). His set had hairs on end for its entirety. Stand out track being his new single, Found What I’ve Been Looking For.

Torch Song on the way?


7. Not bringing wellies is daft

Always bring wellies.



We’d like to say a HUGE thankyou to everyone at Secret Garden Party for supporting CALM over the last four years. A big shout out to James Brennan, Freddie Fellows, Eddy Temple Morris, everyone at Secret FM, Graham Goddard, Rowland Bennett and all of the beautiful CALM volunteers. We love you all!

As Eddy says, “sometimes a beginning comes disguised as an end.”

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