Rain failed to quench super Nova

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For a glimpse of the fabled British spirit in action, look no further than a festival site during a torrential downpour.

Something about the sight of people with wellies and waterproofs on top of their partywear, doggedly enjoying themselves despite the appalling weather, should be enough to restore your faith in the human spirit.

Last weekend’s Nova Festival had all that you might expect from a good small festival - a pleasant boutiquey environment with a friendly and relaxed atmosphere, free from huge corporate logos or self-important security staff.

The festival arena was on one slope of a valley, with the camping ground and the rest of the site hidden from view by trees, helping to provide that all-important feeling of escapism.

On Friday night the magic words: ‘Solid Steel presents...’ lured me into the Fearless Theatre marquee, for an evening of music and visual entertainment.

Sadly, even in the marquee it was impossible to escape the hostile elements - the grounds was so muddy that it constantly seemed to be on the verge of ripping my boots off.

I felt that JFB stood out as one who really seemed to have pulled out all the stops to get the crowd dancing, although all of the half a dozen Solid Steel performers came up with a competent set.

I might be in the minority though, as none of their names cropped up in the organisers’ post-festival list of the most popular musical acts.

For the record, the acts mentioned were: Crazy P, Fink, Mother Feather, Doc Brown, Ghostpoet, Psychemagik, Soul Jazz, and Nonsuch DJs.

Another big success was the crazy golf course, which gave people the rare opportunity to play mini golf while appreciating conceptual art, such as a Saddam Hussein statue designed to distract the player by toppling itself.

Solar panels were visible here and there on site - Nova organisers Katrina Larkin and Victoria Burns say the entire event was run on solar power, or by generators running on biodiesel made from waste vegetable oil.

If you recognise the organisers’ names from somewhere (hint: former Big Chillers) then you’ll be glad to hear that Nova had its own version of the art trail, called the Zen Garden and placed in a handy central location for the benefit of spaced-out partygoers.

All in all, the inaugural Nova Festival was a worthy and well though out event, which promises much for the future.