Many thousands attend a Christian festival, Bible teaching event or camp each year. The blend of relaxation and spiritual refreshment that Spring Harvest, New Wine or a host of other events offer is a winning combination. This has resulted in the growth of many events that appeal to a wide cross section of Christians. The events themselves vary considerably in terms of music flavours, theological emphasis, teaching styles and accommodation options. Many of the events offer a range of programmes to suit all age groups – making this a popular family option. It makes sense to talk to people in your church or orbit of friends to find out what events they attended, and what they recommend. It’s also crucial that you do your own homework by researching the different options. This feature lists most of the bigger events and offers a brief summary.

So whether you’re a regular old trooper and have attended a festival every summer for years, or a spring chicken longing to find out what they are all about, here’s an introduction to the range of events happening in a field, holiday camp or building somewhere in the UK this year.

Cross Rhythms

Numbers: 3,000
Place: Risden Farm, Okehampton, Devon
Dates: 23-25 July 2004
Confirmed speakers/bands: TBC
Full Price/Adult: £30
Accommodation: Camping or dormitory
Contact: line: 08700 118008
Accommodation: Camping or dormitory.
Brief description:Held in Devon this annual three-day event brings together a mix of Christian music, arts, seminars and teaching with quality ministry. Housed in a village of marquees and outdoor venues.
Quote: One of last year’s participants says: ‘So much to do, so little time! God really moved and I believe started something big for the South West’

Crossover – Rumours of Angels

Numbers: 900+
Place: Cultybraggan, Comrie, Perthshire
Dates: 11-13 June 2004
Confirmed speakers/bands: Neil Alton, IndigoEcho and Campervan
Full Price/Adult: £60
Accommodation: Camping or dormitory.
Brief description: Claims to be ‘Scotland’s biggest and best Christian youth festival’, Crossover is an inter agency Christian Youth Festival for young people aged between 12 and 25 (and their leaders) run by The Boys’ Brigade and The Church of Scotland’s Board of Parish Education, with support from Christian Aid, The Girls’ Brigade, Frontier Youth Trust and The Church of Scotland’s Boards of Social Responsibility and National Mission.
Quote: One web forum member said, ‘It’s funny how little unplanned things stick in your mind. The best bits of Crossover are often meeting new people, lying in the sun, playing Frisbee or whatever.’

Detling – The spirit of the Lord

Numbers: 4,000
Place: Detling, Kent
Dates: 7 - 12 August 2004
Confirmed speakers/bands: RT Kendall, Steve Legg, Tony Campolo and Roy Crowne. Tim Vine, Susan Wooley, The Tribe, Cathy Burton and Kato.
Full Price/Adult: £74 to £99
Accommodation: Tent or caravan
Contact: or
Brief description: Six days of prayer, healing, youth sessions, Bible studies, bands, and evening celebration for all ages. This year features a new 18-30s group and a ‘just looking’ section.
Quote: ‘Detling was excellent! Healing and tears and happiness.’

Easter People – Destiny-discovering God’s purpose for your life

Numbers: 12,000 (all ages)
Place: Torquay, Scarborough and Southport
Dates: 13-18 April 2004
Confirmed speakers/bands: Mark Bowness, Andy Sampson, Tom Greggs, Gillian LeBoutillier, Andy Frost. Music led by: Farside, Lounge, Infancy, Nevertheless...
Full Price/Adult: £68
Accommodation: Arrange your own when you book from hotels to guesthouses or self-catering units.
Brief description: Various worship styles and interactive Bible studies that explore the key theme. The afternoons have a wide range of seminars, workshops and chat rooms. A range of programmes for all ages with a lively youth programme and late night fringe.
Quote: ‘One of the key elements of Easter People is participation, and many Church groups find that the programme moves them forward and makes a difference in their local situation. Easter People is not so much a conference - more a visionary movement!’

FIEC Pwllheli 2004 – Bible churches together

Numbers: 3,000
Place: Hafan Y Mor Family Holiday Park, Pwllheli, North Wales
Dates: 26–30 April 2004
Confirmed speakers/bands: Brian Edwards, Wayne Grudem, Paul Mallard, Desmond Maxwell and Jerry Wragg.
Full Price/Adult: £59 (not including accommodation)
Accommodation: Bring your own tent or caravan or arrange your own accommodation.
Brief description: Celebrations, seminars, Bible teaching, recreation and entertainment for all ages. Barbeques, drama and sport activities.
Quote: ‘The purpose of the conference is to provide a high standard of biblical teaching and preaching that is relevant to evangelical churches and Christians. This is achieved through keynote morning Bible ministry and plenary seminars as well as afternoon elective seminars and discussion.’

Flames of fire

Numbers: 1,000+
Place: Royal Welsh Showground, Builth Wells
Dates: 31 July – 6 August 2004
Confirmed speakers/bands: Andy Booth, Ron & Carolyn Allen, Bruce Collins, Stuart Bell, Nigel James, Mike Endicott
Full Price/Adult: £90
Accommodation: Hotel, B&B, caravan or tent.
Brief description: This annual Christian Family Conference has been held at the Royal Welsh Showground since 1996. In the beautiful setting of the mid Wales countryside we seek to offer a combination of worship, ministry, teaching, fellowship and recreation for all members of God’s family.
Quote: Particular care has been given this year to providing for the 18 - 30 age group. ‘People decided they wanted a place to hang out with their peers, seminars they could understand and relate to, and prayer and worship that reflects our hearts.’

Fun with Father – Come and soak in God’s presence

Numbers: This is the first year!
Place: Royal Cornwall Showground, Wadebridge, Cornwall
Dates: 14-21 August 2004
Confirmed speakers/bands: Peter and Heather Jackson from Toronto Airport Christian Fellowship, and Dennis and Melanie Morgan-Dohner. 16+ programme: Dennis & Di Weston.
Full Price/Adult: £70 accommodation, £65 delegate
Accommodation: Tent, one-man tent, caravan or motor caravan.
Brief description: Fun with Father is ‘an opportunity to relax with friends old and new, enjoy the beauty of Cornwall and be inspired by anointed teaching and ministry in an atmosphere of heart-felt worship.’ The daytime is kept free to give everyone an opportunity to relax and strengthen friendships. The aim is that everyone goes away having had a great holiday and with the knowledge that Father God really loves them unconditionally.
Quote: ‘…designed to help clear away the things that so easily spoil and hinder our love for God’.

Grapevine – Side-by-side

Numbers: 9,000
Place: Lincolnshire Showground
Dates: 27–31 August 2004
Confirmed speakers/bands: Stuart Bell, Rachel Hickson, Jeff Lucas, Chris Bowater, Delirious?
Full Price/Adult: £61 inc. camping
Accommodation: camping
Contact: Ground Level office: 01522 533535. Website coming soon…
Brief description: Morning and evening seminars and worship sessions. Provisions for all ages on one site. This event has traditionally attracted wide support from all denominations of churches in the east of England.
Quote: ‘The main evening sessions have a massive string session, huge choir and dance team. It’s just really, really good. There are worldwide speakers and a fantastic late night celebration.’

Grassrootz – Love of music

Numbers: 2,500
Place: Eridge Estate, Tunbridge Wells
Dates: 10 July from 11am to 11pm
Confirmed speakers/bands: Bands confirmed so far are: Delirious? thebandwithnoname, The London Community Gospel Choir, Steve, Cathy Burton, Malcolm Evans, Azle, Tommy Baker (football tricks expert), AKS (graffiti artist), Bishop Graham Cray
Full Price/Adult: £20 on the day, £15 in advance
Accommodation: Book your own. There are nearby campsites.
Brief description: A one-day event with a strong music focus and a kids venue with bouncy castles and entertainment. Grassrootz is a local event that has spread its wings in recent years. Now people come from across the UK. There is something for everybody, including a bookshop and a ‘battle of the bands’ with local school children setting their sights on a winning performance on the main stage.
Quote: ‘This is a family event for all ages to provide a chilled and relaxed atmosphere to enable people to enjoy themselves. There will be great bands that encompass different sounds.’

Greenbelt – Freedom Bound

Numbers: 15,000
Place: Cheltenham Racecourse
Dates: 27–30 August 2004
Confirmed speakers/bands: The Iona Community’s John Bell and US theologian Ched Myers Full Price/Adult: £65 (+£95 for accommodation)
Accommodation: Tents
Brief description: An old favourite in Christian circles, Greenbelt has grown to become God’s Glastonbury. They say: ‘Authentic worship, intelligent Biblical insight and service of neighbour are the basics of our approach to living and proclaiming faith. We encourage social action, justice and peacemaking as an integral part of living the Good News of the Kingdom of God.’
Quote: ‘Take a pop festival, add sunshine and peace, shake vigorously, and pause for breath… Skateboard, dye your hair, expand in worship, and then juggle.’

Keswick – Out of control?

Numbers: 12,000 (all ages)
Place: Keswick, the Lake District
Dates: 17 July - 6 August 2004, split into three weeks (17–23 July, 24–30 July, 31 July – 6 August)
Confirmed speakers/bands: Rico Tice, Dave Richards, Michael Ramsden, Peter Maiden, Jo Goode, Dave Fenton, Elaine Duncan, Steve Brady, Nigel Lee, Jonathan Lamb and Alistair Begg.
Full Price/Adult: Only the price of your chosen accommodation
Accommodation: Camping and caravanning. There is no charge for the convention, Keswick relies solely on donations at the event and you just need to book your own accommodation. No formal booking is required to attend Keswick, you simply arrange your own accommodation and join in!
Brief description: ‘Programmes for all ages. ‘The Keswick Convention is committed to the deepening of the spiritual life in individuals and church communities through the careful exposition and application of Scripture.’
Quote: ‘Powerful preaching, practical seminars, challenging lectures and lively evening celebrations.’

Leading edge 2004 – The big picture - all things together in Christ

Numbers: 1,200, half of which are under 21
Place: The Warwick School, Warwickshire
Dates: 16– 22 August 2004
Confirmed speakers/bands: Adult venue: Ian Coffey, Steve Brady, Dennis Pethers, Roger and Maggie Ellis, David Coffey.
Full Price/Adult: Full week on site - £90
Accommodation: Bring your own tent or caravan or arrange your own accommodation.
Brief description: ‘Celebrations, seminars, bible teaching, recreation and entertainment for all ages’. Lots of fun out of doors for all ages with barbeques, drama and sport activities.
Quote: ‘An opportunity for Baptists and others to get together for a relaxed blend of vibrant worship and inspirational teaching.’

Lee Abbey

Numbers: 100+
Place: North Devon coast
Dates: For 16-25s: 31 July - 14 Aug 2004
Confirmed speakers/bands: TBC
Full Price/Adult: 16 - 25 year olds £170 for 2 weeks
Accommodation: Camping
Brief description: Lee Abbey is advertised as a place where it’s okay to ask hard questions, to argue, to challenge and to be challenged. In the evenings you’ll find worship with a different atmosphere, exploring music, prayer and drama: you, God and everyone.
Quote: ‘You’ll meet new friends, do some sports, get down with the art thing, head off go-karting, paintballing, bowling, horseriding, mountain-biking, swimming, get a grip on God’s Word through relevant seminars, hearing lively speakers and much more!!’

Living Water – Reaching the Generations

Numbers: unknown
Place: Norfolk Showground, Norwich
Dates: 7-11 August 2004
Confirmed speakers/bands: Brennan Manning, John Mulinde, Rob Frost
Full Price/Adult: £75
Accommodation: Camping or local catered or self-catered accommodation
Brief description: ‘Reaching the Generations’ is a theme that spans God’s dealings with his people across history and represents the very nature of a God. Looking at how each generation can creatively engage in mission and discipleship within its own peer group, but also how the generations can support each other in releasing the full potential that is the family of God. On site facilities include tent hire, kids clubs and the popular Café Live venue for all ages with live evening music. Exhibitions and a Global village. Quote: ‘Chill out at the cafe with good teaching, worship and all your favourite coffees.’

New Wine

Numbers: 11,500 each week
Place: Royal Bath and West Showground, Shepton Mallet, Somerset.
Dates: 31 July - 6 August, 8-14 August
Confirmed speakers/bands: TBC
Full Price/Adult: £105 (£87 for 14-19s)
Accommodation: Camping community ‘villages’ – these are integral to the ethos of this event.
Brief description: New Wine has developed and grown out of an event into a growing network of renewed churches of all denominations (mostly Anglican), which share similar values of worship, teaching and ministry in the power of the Holy Spirit. Other programme strands include; ‘Emerging Generation’ where the content is expressed in different ways to engage with 21st century culture and is devoted to exploring life, church & mission for a new generation. Café’s are open all day and there is plenty of space to relax ‘with no pressure to do stuff.’ Also includes excellent youth and children programmes.
Quote: ‘A wide range of celebrations, Bible teaching sessions and seminars each day from early morning till late at night’.

Soul Survivor – Living LOUD: Pursuing a God lifestyle

Numbers: Week A: 7714, Week B: 11612
Place: Royal Bath and West Showground, Shepton Mallet
Dates: 16-20 August 2004
Confirmed speakers/bands: TBC – from various cultures and backgrounds.
Full Price/Adult: £75
Accommodation: Camping
Brief description: Aimed at young people who attend in their thousands with youth leaders. Features morning and evening meetings of worship, teaching and ministry. Seminars and workshops aim to help young people learn more and then live out their faith.
Quote: ‘At this year’s Soul Survivor we will be looking at how to live a Jesus-centred life, one that is loud on the outside because it’s deeply and quietly confident on the inside.’ One dedicated participant said, ‘If you want a place to express your passion for Jesus, then there’s no better place than Soul Survivor. My best memory from last year was feeling free to just dance and worship, no restrictions. It was not like regular church at all.’

Spring Harvest – 2004: Grace Academy (2005: Sing-The Lord’s song..)

Numbers: 70,000 Christians of all ages and different backgrounds.
Place: Two sites: Minehead and Skegness
Dates: 29 March – 18 April 2004. 2005 unconfirmed
Confirmed speakers/bands: Steve Chalke, Jeff Lucas, Bishop Pete Broadbent, Sharon Anson, Graham Kendrick, Roy Crowne, Gerard Kelly, Joel Edwards, Fran Beckett, Pete Greig, Ian Coffey, Stephen Gaukroger, Elaine Storkey, Rob Parsons, Diane Louise Jordan, Ishmael, Graham Cray. Full Price/Adult: Standard half board from £120, self-catering starts at £75.
Accommodation: Four categories of chalet (from standard to deluxe) or touring caravans.
Contact: Booking lines for 2005 open in June.
Brief description: For over 25 years Spring Harvest has attracted huge numbers of all age groups for a week of high quality teaching, worship and fun at two Butlins sites.Selfcatering or half board options are available. Book early unless you are prepared to be flexible over what dates/accommodation you prefer. Each age group are well catered for.There is an amazing amount of choice on offer with various styles of worship, teaching, seminars and late night arts/bands etc.
Quote: ‘There’s so much to do because it’s held in a holiday park so you can have a proper holiday and a seminar that fits.’

Summer Madness

Numbers: 4,000
Place: King’s Hall, Belfast
Dates: 2–6 July
Confirmed speakers/bands: Andy Hawthorne, Delirious?
Full Price/Adult: £52.50 (£76.25)
Accommodation: Tents
Brief description: Summer Madness want to give ‘the challenge of a radical lifestyle’. It blends seminars, workshops, outdoor pursuits, music and drama. Avenues they are exploring for future are: new web portal for young people, job fair / vocations conference, cross-community schools projects, prayer initiatives, leadership/ministry training events, partnerships with others, youth church…
Quote: ‘Performances from a wide range of international and local Christian artists, and a packed fringe programme of outdoor activities, sport and entertainment’.

Word and Spirit – Using both the word and the spirit

Numbers: unknown
Place: The Bolton Arena, Middlebrook, Horwich (Junction 5, M61)
Dates: 13-15 May 2004
Confirmed speakers/bands: Rick Joyner and Steve Thompson (MorningStar, USA), Steve Witt (Cleveland, Ohio) and Martin and Linda Smith (Manchester Vineyard).
Full Price/Adult: £45
Accommodation: Book your own
Brief description: Celebrations, seminars, Bible teaching, recreation and entertainment for all ages, plus barbeques, drama and sport activities. Quote: ‘The message of this conference is simple - we do not have to give up the Word of God in the scriptures to wholeheartedly embrace the power of the Spirit. This is good news!’

Two other large-scale events taking place this summer are: Soul in the City (26-30 July and 2-6 August 2004) and New Day (August 7th - 12th 2004). These do not fit the typical festivals remit so we have not included them in this feature. For more details contact: Soul in the City and New Frontiers.

Although we have taken reasonable efforts to ensure the accuracy of these details, it is your responsibility to carefully research the options for yourself.

This list is not exhaustive. If you organize a festival you think should be included in a similar feature in 2005, email us with the details: