Over the weekend I spent my Saturday night tucked up in a blanket and clinging to an umbrella whilst singing along with Hugh Jackman in the rain. This is all thanks to the outdoor film festival hosted at Burghley House.
I have visited Burghley House since I was a toddler. This grand Elizabethan house is just over an hours drive from my home in Leicester. Burghley House was one of the numerous filming locations used in the 2005 version of Pride and Prejudice (a film my Mum remains obsessed with). When I was younger, I was never a fan of the grand house with all its history of lords and ladies as I much preferred running around the water features in the Garden of Surprises. Now I am a little older I have a sense of nostalgia towards all the huge stately homes my Mother dragged me around throughout my teenage years.
Burghley House hosted its first film festival in 2013 and this year marks its last. The festival ran for five nights from the 24th July to the 28th July. There were two sessions per day. The daytime session began at 11:30 am and presented films intended for a family-based audience such as Incredibles 2 and Coco. The evening session began around 6 pm and presented some huge blockbusters for older audiences as this year saw films such as Black Panther, The Favourite and Bridesmaids appear on the big screen. Tickets for the event varied in price depending on whether you booked in advance or bought your tickets at the gate. My Dad and I had been planning to attend the film festival months in advance, therefore we managed to buy our tickets online which were £12 each. Whereas tickets bought at the gate were priced at £18.50.
This year we managed to secure tickets to watch The Greatest Showman and Bohemian Rhapsody. All week my Dad and I had been checking the weather in the hope that we could escape the torrential rain set to shower over Stamford, however we soon realised that we would need our umbrellas and wellies this year. We arrived at the event just before 6 pm and we were directed by staff to park near the front gates. We threw our deck chairs on our backs and wandered towards the gates of the festival. We were warmly greeted by the staff members hiding under a marquee in their raincoats. After our tickets were checked we walked through to see the lines of umbrellas and tents pitched up on the lawn as attendees prepared to face the elements. We set up our deckchairs just beside a group dressed as the characters from The Greatest Showman who were twirling around the grounds in their ponchos. After we managed to pull out our blankets I ventured over to the line of tents at the corner of the lawn. One tent had a pile of deckchairs which had been pre-booked whilst the next tent was selling essential items such as umbrellas, picnic mats and scarves. The final tent was offering food and drink throughout the entire evening. Everyone rushed to their seats as the first film began. The next two hours were spent singing along to the hit soundtrack of The Greatest Showman and peering over the sea of umbrellas. After the first film our blankets were soaked through, so we decided one film in the rain was enough for one night, consequently we left just before Bohemian Rhapsody began. Although, my Dad was determined to make it through the double bill and managed to stay out in the rain for another two hours! Whilst the weather was very different to my previous visit to the film festival during the summer of 2017 my experience as a whole was just as much fun.
The Burghley Film Festival may have come to an end, however there are still hundreds of outdoor film events running across the country set to air this summer. I would really recommend attending any one of these events as regardless of the weather it will be an unforgettable experience.