Run by the mighty Festival Republic (formerly Mean Fiddler), Latitude is more than just a music festival, with a heavy emphasis on other arts, including poetry readings, stand-up comedy and theatre performance. Founded in 2006, the 3-day festival is held in Henham Park, Southwold, Suffolk, in mid-July, with the headline acts at the inaugural festival including Snow Patrol, Mogwai, Patti Smith and The Lemonheads. The festival grew the next year, with extra stages, and names such as Damien Rice, Arcade Fire and Bill Bailey, before the gig really tightened up into the more professional, secure and corporate-led event it is today. The separate Comedy Arena has hosted funny men like Andy Robinson, Russell Kane, Lee Mack and Phill Jupitus, and in 2009, Thom Yorke announced an exclusive one-off show at Latitude, which saw the whole ticket allocation sold out within days. Also in 2009, the festival was covered extensively by BBC Radio, and the attendance reached its then-biggest ever, of 25,000. Poets like Andrew Motion, Jackie Kay and Simon Armitage, sold out the Poetry Tent, and The Literary Arena hosted Sir Peter Blake and Blake Morrison.
The 2010 Latitude Festival was extended to four days, and increased its capacity to 35,000, with headline acts Florence + The Machine and Vampire Weekend, and comedy legends Emo Phillips and Ardal O'Hanlon, amongst others. The 2011 festival featured Paolo Nutini, Paloma Faith, Suede, Glasvegas and Echo & The Bunnymen.
Camping is available onsite, and there is a separate family campsite, although many events, musical, comedy, film, theatre and cabaret, may not be suitable for under-15s, so it's not the most child-friendly of festivals insofar as actual entertainment, although the facilities are of a high standard.
The 2012 Latitude Festival will be held 12th -15th July.
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