Y Not Festival

Page was last changed Jan 17th, 2019 @ 17:07:43

Y Not festival is a weekend live music event held in the Peak District country, it is self-described as a ‘Small Fresh & Loud Music Festival’, which annually puts on a varied programme covering everything from country folk to indie rock. The Peak District, with its rolling green hills, provides a gorgeous backdrop to 3 days of music and camping.

The festival has been steadily growing in popularity, and won the 2012 'Best Small Festival Award' at the UK festival awards.

The festival also prides itself in providing the very best in locally brewed ales, ciders, cocktails and other celebrated produce.


This festival prides itself on having an intimate environment; the small dedicated staff means that the festival eschews the more corporate and commercial feel of some of the bigger festivals, with many people returning year after year.

The line-up consists mainly fresh emerging music acts, as well as many established acts whose success is marked by a dedicated fan base. This doesn't mean the festival is without its major headliners, previous line-ups featured Feeder, Maximo Park, The Futureheads and The Mystery Jets to name a few.

There is also a yearly fancy dress theme which is discussed and released on the main website’s forum. The 2013 theme was 'Superheroes'.

Check out Rebecca Dixons review from the 2011 Event


2013 line-up

The big event of the 2013 Y Not line-up was the surprise appearance of Reverend and the Makers, currently finishing their third album, from which they played the singe 'Bassmaker'. Other acts included the indie-rock band Mystery Jets, hip-hop/electronic duo Scroobius Pip with their dark lyrics and a thick bass line, and The Horror upcoming band with a wistful and melancholy sound.

2012 line-up

Headliners include The Wombats, We Are Scientist, The Pigeon Detectives, The Subways, British Sea Power, Turbowolf, Rolo Tomassi, Lower Than Atlantis and many many more.

2011 line-up and previous line-ups

2011's programme featured The Go! Team, The Rifles, The Duke Spirit, Feeder, New Young Pony Club, Miles Kane, Maximo Park, Viva Brother, Sonic Boom Six, Jamie Woon, Beardyman, Art Brut, Pete And The Pirates, for full details of the 2011 line-up press here

For details of past line-ups click here

History and Facts

To begin with the festival debuted in 2006 in a small quarry in Derbyshire, with only a scaffold stage and a hand-made DJ booth to host the event.

Expanding slightly year on year, 2009 saw the event sell out, with 2010 being the year that festival was shortlisted for “Best Small Festival” at the UK Festival Awards.

The Big Gin stage is named after The Big Gin event, before Y Not Festival was known, it was previously an evnt run by sixth form pupils at Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School in Ashbourne. The gathering had a few local bands and a few DJs that played over 2 nights.

On Site Information

Cash point are available on site but like most festivals, these cash points will charge anything up to £2 to withdraw your own money, so budget wisely.

Those attending are also encouraged to care for the environment as they party, with recycling bins and regular litter bins available all-round the site.

Programmes for the event will be on sale, available in a full size version, or a compact mini version attached to fun bottle opener lanyards.

These are sold at the merchandise tent, whose details or what merch will be on sale due to be released closer to the festival time.

Music Stages And Other Entertainment

There are five music stages at the festival, The Big Gin Stage which is the main stage, The Quarry Stage which is the largest indoor stage and plays a varied mix of music, The Giant Squid, for loud and experimental music, The Allotment Stage, for local unsigned talent, and The Hog & Barrel, a cosy inn with open mic nights and stand up. The smaller Allotment tent has hay bales for spectators to sit on. There is also a tent for Reggae.

Away from the music, Y Not offers a humble choice of entertainment, from open mic nights, along with the rum pirates at the bar, who get you involved in drinking games and a game of tug ‘o’ war. There are also DJ’s in tents playing into the early hours.

Food And Drink

In terms of drinking water, there are plenty of water points surrounding the campsites as well as mineral water on sale at the bars.

Unlike many festivals, the food selection at Y Not Festival caters to all tastes, featuring Sunday roast dinners, pies and stalls specialising in food for vegetarians or vegans.

The is also the famous Y Not Festival bar that offers fair priced local ales, ciders and a wide range of funky cocktails.


Alcohol is allowed into the camping site but not into the stage areas. Bottles are forbidden so as to not injure the livestock.

Camping And Other Accommodation

The camping opens 10:00 AM on Friday and closes at 12:00 PM on Monday. Those holding special passes can get in on the Thursday and enjoy special sets.

There is a family and quiet zone, which is recommended for those who enjoy a decent night’s sleep.

There are showers and toilets that are serviced 24 hours a day, and they won the 2011 'Best Toilet Awards.'

There is a caravan and campervan area but an additional £20 charge will be added onto your ticket charge.

Disabled Access

Y Not tries to be as inclusive as possible. There are disabled toilets, and viewing platforms. Click here for more information, or e-mail the organisers at [email protected].

Y Not Location And Travel

By Car: The site addess is Mouldridge Lane, Pikehall, Nr. Matlock, Derbyshire, DE4 2PH

By Local Bus/Coach: There is a free shuttle bus between local town Buxton Station and the festival site, however you will need to book as the service operates on a first come first serve basis. For booking details click here

By Train: The closest train station is Buxton Rail and as mentioned in the previous section, there is a shuttle bus service, but you must book in advance.

By Plane: The closest airport to Y Not Festival is East Midlands.


Tickets in 2013 were going for £79.50 for access to the festival and the camping.

Festival rules state that children and teen aged between 10-15 must be accompanied by an adult aged over 21, and because of festival operating a RU25 policy, it’s advised to bring ID.