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Welcome to Catalyst Festival with Hope Church! Catalyst is great with inspiring worship, motivational preaches and fun activities. To find out more about the festival as a whole check out catalystnetwork.org/festival but one of the best things is hanging out together, just being with our church family for several days. Camping on site really enables this as we can eat, walk to meetings, queue for the shower(!), play games and have late night chats together.
Not keen on camping?
The information below consists mainly of some practical thoughts to help you make a success of camping, as this will be the option most choose – the camping price is included in the Catalyst ticket. You may feel a bit nerv- ous about camping if you haven’t done it before, but remember there are lots of experienced campers to help you out. There are other accommodation options but these will cost extra. You can do a search for B&Bs and hotels near the festival site (Stoneleigh Park, CV8 2LZ, on the south side of Coventry). Tony and several others from Hope Church are staying at The Old Mill, Baignton so see if they have any space. Remember the festival site is in the middle of rural Warwickshire so you will need a car to get to and from the site.
Help with Tents and Equipment
Below you will find a list of equipment and supplies you need to think of bringing and you will also find some keys to successful camping.
If you do not have a tent or any particular items of equipment, the church and some church members may have some that could be borrowed. Talk to Shiona (07982 824711) and she will try and help you. Another option is to hire a tent and any equipment from Ibex Camping who will even put the tent up for you. See here: h ps:// www.ibexcamping.co.uk/catalyst-2018-40-w.asp. The prices look quite reasonable to me.
Keys to Successful Camping
1. Keep Dry
For this you need a reasonable tent, most come with an integrated groundsheet but if not, a groundsheet too. Tents are usually labelled with how many people they will sleep – this number can only be accommodated if you sleep like sardines so aim to put two people in a three man tent etc. Think too of space to store your luggage. Tents range from small 1-2 man tents, with just enough space to lie down in and a small porch at the front to cook in and store a few items, to large family tents that could sleep 6 people, you can stand up in them and there is space for a table and cooker.
Try and familiarise yourself with how to put up the tent before you go although there will be plenty of peo- ple around to help when you arrive. It is important that the canvas is taut to prevent pooling of water, the outer should not be touching the inner tent nor should anything inside including bodies in the night be
touching the canvas as this tends to draw the water in.
You will also need a raincoat, wellies or waterproof shoes (also useful when there is dew on the grass in the mornings).
2. Keep Warm
A warm sleeping bag or an extra warm duvet, extra blankets, warm pyjamas or a tracksuit, thick socks and a hoodie to wear in bed plus the most important thing – insulation from the ground – an air bed, foam mat or camp bed with another blan-
ket underneath should keep you warm and toasty while you sleep. If you have a stove to heat water, a hot wa- ter bottle is a great addition.
The days should be a reasonable temperature however a warm jacket to wear in the evenings when we sit around having a hot chocolate or a glass of wine is useful.
3. Eat Well
Different people have different approaches to cooking and eating. Some will just
bring a collection of snacks such as cereal bars, fruit etc and maybe a single gas burner
to make hot drinks on. There are take away vans near the meeting halls but it is mostly
things like burgers and they are not especially cheap. I do not remember sandwiches
being sold. You may be able to find something like donuts for breakfast but I am not
sure. There is a small farm shop on site with some bread and milk, specialities such as
chutneys and a small but nice café – I think they sell cakes as well as drinks. There is also a café area near the meeting hall but I don’t think they sell food.
Most in order to keep costs down will want to bring their own food and cooking facilities. People generally use camping stoves that run with gas bottles. Bring a spare bottle or two. If you are creative and there are only one or two of you, you may be able to cope with a single burner. Most people will need a stove with two burners. Don’t for- get the matches! And remember that they are not as powerful as your hob at home so cooking takes longer. Simple meals like pasta or rice, maybe instant mashed potato and a jar or tin of sauce and perhaps add some additional tinned meat, fish or veg work well. As a family, we usually bring two or three frozen sauces that we have cooked be- forehand. We keep them in a cool bag with some freezer blocks and other cold items
(we may freeze the spare bottle of milk for example) and that works quite well. Do be aware that if it is warm and sunny, tents get quite warm in the daytime. A cool bag or box is also useful for fresh items such as milk, fruit, vegetables, small quantities of cold meats or cheese. However there is no facility to refreeze freezer blocks so they will not keep properly cold for long. For lunches, many will make sandwiches but soup or hot dogs are alterna- tives if you want something hot. We will not be in town and local shops and supermarkets are far and not easy to find so it is best to bring all your food with you.
On Sunday we will have a bring and share lunch with Hope Church South Beds and the Luton folk who come on the coach so bring some food to share. It is also nice to think of little treats like cake, drinks to share with folk on other days.
Facilities on Site
There will be a standpipe in or near our field. Bring a water container – those 5l spring water bottles work quite well or a jerry can.
Toilets and showers – these are a mixture of established toilets in buildings (a bit shabby) and portaloos / portashowers. They are not usually far from the tents; there can be queues for the show- ers, in the mornings especially.
There are no washing up facilities so bring a bowl to do it near your tent. There are places to dispose of waste water and also empty chemical toilets and skips for rubbish.
Lastly, if you need any advice or help with equipment, do contact me: Shiona Koudougou
Tel: 07982 824711
What to Bring
“O” means these items are optional – according to personal preference, how you decide to do meals etc.
Tent including groundsheet
Tent pegs including some spares
Mallet (wooden or rubber hammer to bang pegs in)
O: A windbreak can be used to give you a bit more useful outdoor space eg a sheltered place to sit or cook. O: A dustpan brush to sweep out grass from your tent and a cloth to wipe up any mud are also useful Lamp (battery or gas) and / or torches and spare batteries
Sleeping mat / airbed and pump / camp-bed Warm sleeping bag or duvet
O: Pillow, sheet
O: Hot water bottle can be nice
O: Fold up table and chairs esp if you have a larger tent. You don’t have to have these – you can just sit on a mat or blanket but a chair is much more comfortable!
O: Stove with gas canister and a spare
O: Matches (keep them dry in a plastic bag)
O: Saucepans, stove-top kettle, frying pan
O: A few kitchen utensils eg tin opener, sharp knife
Cups, plates, cutlery
O: Cool bag or box with freezer blocks
O: Washing up bowl, liquid, sponge, tea towel
Bin bags for rubbish and dirty laundry
O: Pegs can be useful to hang up damp tea towels
O: Wet wipes and tissues/ loo roll are always handy!
Food! Its nice if you can bring some drinks and food, eg cake, to share. Food for the Sunday Bring and Share Lunch
Raincoat, wellies or boots, flip flops, warm jacket and warm clothes for sleeping Towel, shower gel and a plastic bag to carry it all to the shower
Small first aid kit