Greenbelt – the festival comes to us this year! July 27, 2020 Sunday Service The festival that could not be stoppedLots of us say that Greenbelt is like coming home each year. This summer that will be true in ways we’ve never imagined. For two days at the end of August we will, literally, all be at home during Greenbelt.Here’s what we’re planning…When we had to abandon plans for Wild at Heart, you were there to support us financially (and emotionally). As a result, while other festivals have had no choice other than to write this year off, we’ve still been able to bring you Wild at Home’s small, perfectly-formed slices of Greenbelt all summer, as well as launch the first series of our podcast. And now this: a virtual Greenbelt to be experienced wherever you are on the last weekend in August. On Saturday we’ll bring you a full day crammed with livestreamed goodness, everything from music to comedy and spoken word. We’re bringing ideas, provocation and debate too, as well as smaller zoom-style spaces for the types of conversations and catch-ups that make our festival special. Saturday 29th AugustThere’ll be music, comedy and spoken word live from The Canopy, as well as ideas and debate live from The Pagoda. You’ll also be able to catch up for after-show conversations and roundtable discussions live from The Foundry.We think you’ll find that the walk between venues will be much, much shorter than usual (one click and you’ll be there) and we’ll have lots of messages and pop-up appearances from your favourite Greenbelt faces. We’re currently busy finalising the lineup so that we can share it with you – we’re really excited about how it’s coming together.Almost more than anything else, we’ll be somewhere to gather the clans again this summer, and where better to do it than our very own pub? So for those of you for whom the festival is synonymous with talking until late over a craft ale and a picnic table, never fear. After all, no Greenbelt would be the same without drop-in tables and meet-up spaces in The Jesus Arms. The drinks might be on you this year, but we’ll provide the virtual venue. We’re really aware of the effect this summer is having on the delicate festival ecosystem, so we’re delighted that The Marketplace will also be open for all your ethical festival goodies from traders and friends. We can confirm that there will be festival merch too, on sale in advance of the festival.We all make Greenbelt together, and there will also be a Volunteer Lounge open for those of you brilliant people who help us hand-make our festival each year. Anyone seeking to recreate the full steward experience by touring their house with a torch at 4am in the morning is very welcome. We’ll be hosting all of this on a single, easy-to-access online portal so we can ensure the best possible audio and visual quality, and community experience for everyone.Sunday 30th AugustAfter all that streaming on Saturday, we’d all be forgiven for wanting to take it easy like Sunday morning. We’ve got something slightly different planned to our usual Sunday morning communion (although the early birds among you will catch a Greenbelt-flavoured blast of goodness on Radio 4 at 8.10am). Sunday 30th August is going to be our day to ditch our screens and come together for a lunchtime communion and picnic. You bring the hamper and rug and we’ll supply an hour of thoughtful and encouraging reflection for us all to focus on and gather around – served up by some very familiar Greenbelt faces, speaking to you from the beautiful (but empty) grounds of Boughton House.It may just be an hour in time, but – gathered with our families and friends in parks, gardens, central reservations and on hillsides – all over the country we’ll be saying our prayers and remembering one another and this precious and precarious planet which is our home – wherever we are. You never know, if we say our Amens loud enough, we might even hear the distant sound of the festival on the air…Festival passesPasses will go on sale from Monday 3 August at just £10 for the weekend (think of them as your digital wristband for the weekend). You’re very welcome to invite people round – distantly social of course – to share the one pass (one wristband to rule them all). In fact, we’d love it if you’re able to experience the weekend with as many people as you’re safely able to be with. If you were one of those wonderful people able to donate your festival ticket back to us this year, then your pass will be – of course – on us.We’ll still be making Greenbelt as accessible as we can, so there will be concessions and the option to apply for free passes through our ‘Open Festival’ scheme. We’ll bring you details of all this in early August. We don’t want anyone to miss out.So for now make sure you keep the Saturday 29th and Sunday 30th August free, and we’ll see you there. As soon as passes go on sale, we’ll let you know. We might not all be in the same field, but we’ll still be somewhere to believe in.