The best small shop festivals in 2022

You know what they say, good things come in small packages. The same philosophy can be applied to festivals. We mean of course, Glastonbury and R&L are great. Incredible, even. But small festivals have something special.

They are charming, enchanting and intimate. It’s the perfect combination for a festival. Small festivals are also great because you can make lots of new friends and have a good chance of running into them later. If you make friends at Glasto, you better believe you’ll never see them again.

Whether you’re looking to catch the hottest new indie bands or dance ’til you can’t feel your legs to the tunes played by top DJs, this list of the best small festivals in the UK.

green man festival

2022 lineup: Michael Kiwanuka, plus TBA

When: August 18-21

Where: Crickhowell, Brecon Beacons

Located in the beautiful Brecon Beacons near the Black Mountains in Wales, green man festival is an otherworldly immersive experience. When you’re not enjoying jaw-dropping views, you’ll be watching some of the best indie and alternative bands from around the world. 2021 had a huge lineup including Little Dragon, Caribou, Mogwai, DC Fountains, Thundercat, Django Django, Working Men’s Club, and Midi Black, so we can’t wait to see what 2022 has in store for us.

The fascinating festival site has ten entertainment zones and a multitude of activities to get involved in. Previous years have celebrated literature, art, stalls featuring Japanese kumihimo weaving, candle boats and more. There is something for everyone at the unconventional festival which is green man. Plus, you can see the flames engulf the huge wickerwork effigy on the closing night!

Find tickets for the Green Man Festival 2022 – here

slam dunk festival

Programming 2022: Sum 41, The Dropkick Murphys, Alexisonfire, The Interrupters, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, The Used, The Story So Far, Deaf Havana, Pennywise

When: June 3 (north) / June 4 (south)

Where: Temple Newsam, Leeds (north) Hatfield House, Hatfield (south)

Pop-punk never dies! Since its inception in 2006, the Slam Dunk Festival has become a mecca for pop-punk and rock fans. With a North edition and a South edition on the same weekend, you have no excuse to miss this unreal programming.

If a day of moshing and screaming with some of the hardest pop-punk anthems isn’t enough, you can sign up for the official launch and after-parties where you can attend Mayday Parade, true friends, and As is. Slam Dunk really knocked it out of the bag this year with legendary bands such as Sum 41, The Wonderful Years, The Affliction of Friendship, The Story So Far, and there are still many more groups to be announced.

Find tickets for Slam Dunk Festival North 2022 – here / Slam Dunk Festival South 2022 – here

Manchester Psychic Festival

Programming 2022: Tinariwen, Warmduscher, Jane Weaver, Battles, Hinds, Goat Girl, Gwenno, Psychedelic Porn Crumpets, Dead Meadow, Willy Mason, plus TBA

When: September 3

Where: Various locations around Manchester

Manchester Psychic Festival quickly became one of Manchester’s best-loved festivals. It’s a great way to discover the best upcoming and out-of-the-ordinary music. For example, Tinariwen creates the music of Tishoumaren, also known as desert blues. Terraces make psychedelic rock, Goat Girl is post-punk, and monster slug makes pop lofi. This is the perfect place for a music fan looking for something a little different.

The festival also takes you on a tour of some of Manchester’s amazing venues with stages at YES, Gorilla, The Ritz, Albert Hall, RNCM, and Institute of the Deaf. And when you’re not discovering your new favorite atypical artists, you can enjoy art exhibitions, installations, visuals and street food.

Find tickets for Manchester Psych Fest 2022 – here

mint festival

2022 programming: to be determined

When: TBA, September

Where: Newsam Green Farm, Leeds

One of the country’s most beloved dance festivals is back this year to leave you a sweaty, smiling mess. Returning to Newsam Green for its tenth anniversary, 2022 is sure to be huge. We don’t have the lineup yet but last year we saw Amélie Lens, Dax J, Darius Syrossian, Mange tout, Enzo Siragusa, Gerd Janson, Maya Jane Coles, Patrick Topping, Ricardo Villalobos and more dominate the scenes. And seeing as this year is a big anniversary, we expect the lineup to be golden.

Brought to you by the same people behind mint warehouse (nominated for best big club in DJ Mag this year) and Mint Events, if there is a guarantee, it is that this festival will be one hell of a party. Buy your tickets as soon as possible to guarantee your place at one of the hottest parties of 2022.

Find tickets for the Mint Festival 2022 – here

farm party

Programming 2022: Elder Island (live), BCUC, Do Nothing, Sinkane, Broken Brass, Sophie Hunger, plus TBA

When: July 29 – 30

Where: Bruton, Somerset

farm party is a small festival based in the beautiful Somerset countryside. Proud of the intimate and welcoming environment it offers, you are sure to let loose and make new friends at this gem of a festival. While more artists, including a DJ lineup, will be announced later, so far the festival already has an interesting and diverse lineup of artists outside of the mainstream.

Along with stunning music, you’ll find workshops, poetry, comedy, and workshops to dive into. With nothing but positive vibes, inclusivity and good times at the heart of farm party, you’ll never want to leave.

Find tickets for FarmFest 2022 – here

playground festival

2022 programming: to be determined

When: to be determined

Where: Rouken Glen Park, Glasgow

playground festival is a delightful hidden escape in the heart of Glasgow that puts legends and up-and-coming artists on the same page for an open celebration of all music, regardless of genre. For example, last year Bill saw indie icons The Libertines, ethereal group from Madchester james, the largest nightclub group Chic & Nil Rogers, the influential Culture Club & Boy George, as well as DJs and small artists.

The only information we have so far is that the festival will take place in 2022. We don’t have a schedule, but a quick look at last year’s reassures us. If you go this year, leave your inhibitions at the door and marvel at talented performers, light shows, acrobatic aerial shows and more.

Find tickets for Playground Festival 2022 – here

The highest point

2022 lineup: Richard Ashcroft, plus TBA

When: May 12-14

Where: Williamson Park, Lancaster

Climax Festival is back for another high-energy weekend brimming with tunes, dancing, mouth-watering food, passionate crowds and an unbeatable atmosphere. We’re on the edge of our seats awaiting another lineup announcement, but we’re excited to witness the legendary Richard Ashcroft (formerly from the verve) grace the main stage on Thursday nights.

Past lineups have featured a range of genres, including folk, pop, indie, rock, hip hop, disco, and soul, among others. This year’s lineup will no doubt be just as diverse, so keep an eye out for updates. We know we will!

Find tickets for Highest Point Festival 2022 – here

The One in the Woods Festival

Programming 2022: AIROD, Blindside, Calyx & Teebee, DJ Hazard, Drumsound & Bassline Smith, Fatima Hajji, Kings Of The Rollers

When: June 3 – 4

Where: Orrell Hill Woods, Liverpool

The One in the Woods Festival is a pilgrimage to a parallel world, one where you can escape the hassle of everyday life and lose yourself in extraordinary dance music. Located in the woods of Orrell Hill, just outside Liverpool, the trip to this ethereal world is a simple and short train journey. A small price to pay for an unforgettable getaway.

With drums and bass, techno and tastier genres on offer, you’re spoiled for choice in a colorful soundscape. With three distinct stages, each brimming with raw talent, The One In The Woods might just be the best haven 2022 has to offer.

Find tickets for The One in the Woods Festival 2022 – here

Baltic Weekend

2022 programming: to be determined

When: June 3-5

Where: Baltic Triangle, Liverpool

One of the biggest dance events on the Liverpool calendar is back to unite ravers across the country. As individuals come together to become mobs, the music drops, the booze flows, and all anyone cares about is the music and the good times. Take us there already!

Now we don’t have a lineup yet, but last year was brilliant with Mike Skinner, Alma, Central Cee, and other huge talents that break it. And of course you can always get a lovely AirBnB instead of lying in your own dirt in a field in the middle of nowhere.

Find tickets for Baltic Weekender 2022 – here

Has this list of little boutique festivals got you interested in what else is out there? Well, look no further than our festival finder here.


Header image credit: Green Man Festival (Facebook)

Comments are closed.