Set in a picturesque rural landscape, WOMAD at Charlton Park presents an opportunity to experience the festival in a truly green, pleasant and spacious environment. The festival will feature seven stages and workshop areas, including a children’s village, many new activities and festival features, all in the idyllic environment of Charlton’s arboretum, open lawns and rolling fields.
“In this special 25th festival anniversary year we are creating a new rural vision and a new life for WOMAD in the United Kingdom. After all these years, Charlton Park is in many ways a fulfilment of our earliest dreams for the festival. WOMAD has always aimed to bring artists and audiences together in an atmosphere of delight, discovery and peace, and at Charlton Park we believe we have found the perfect place to achieve this… a unique cultural experience in a corner of the English countryside at its idyllic, bucolic best.” – Thomas Brooman, WOMAD’s Artistic Director.
Home to The Earl of Suffolk and Berkshire, Charlton Park is located just outside the historic abbey town of Malmesbury in North Wiltshire. Easily accessible by road and rail, the festival site is just seven miles from Junction 17 of the M4, only one hundred miles due west of London, and less than thirty miles away from Bath, Bristol and Swindon.
“My decision to invite WOMAD to bring their festival to Charlton Park was an important one, as Charlton Park has always been a private estate with a great community spirit all around. WOMAD came extremely highly commended by everyone to whom I spoke, specifically regarding the impact WOMAD would have on us all, and we trust they will continue their great work here in Wiltshire. I am very excited by this project and look forward to a long and successful relationship between Charlton Park and WOMAD.” – Viscount Andover, on behalf of Charlton Park.
“It was wonderful to receive the invitation to Charlton Park at a moment when we and our audience felt we had outgrown our home in Reading. When I visited with Thomas Brooman, it was immediately clear what a perfect venue Charlton Park would be for us and it was also great to have such a warm welcome from Viscount Andover and his team. WOMAD has always worked best as a partnership with a community, and we very much look forward to bringing WOMAD back to the west country, where it began 25 years ago.” – Peter Gabriel, WOMAD Co-Founder.
Alongside the new attractions of Charlton Park, WOMAD’s familiar feast of entertainment and celebration will remain: brilliant live music; weekend camping; a full programme of participatory workshops for adults and children; Taste The World sessions; late night dance, DJ’s and grooves at Club WOMAD; relaxed entertainment on Thursday evening; a children’s procession on Sunday; a chance to ‘shop around the world’ at over 250 international food, drink, arts, craft and merchandise stalls in our Global Village; sumptuous site decoration featuring hundreds of flags, projections, visual art and temporary structures; plus an unrivalled atmosphere that our audience simply loves.
WOMAD Charlton Park will welcome an audience of 20,000, together with over seventy world-class artists from forty different countries. Each and every musical experience at the festival will be offered in its own special space – from main stage and high profile, to intimate and troubadour acoustic, our aim is to respond creatively to our new environment, engaging with the beautiful character of the place.
“It is incredibly exciting to be working on this new event and, as always, our aim is to present the best possible line-up from across the globe. I am pleased to be able to confirm that next year’s WOMAD at Charlton Park will feature Baaba Maal, Bill Cobham, Sam Tshabalala, Steel Pulse, The Dhol Foundation – and many more to be announced early next year.” – Paula Henderson, Festival Director
Tickets for the event will be on sale via our website from Thursday 19 October with a number of tickets being sold at 2006 prices. This fantastic offer is only available until 31 January 2007, after which all tickets will be sold at the standard prices.
Full details of the event, including initial line-up and site information, will be announced in January 2007.