The Britannia Times
The Official Word - Eroica Britannia 2018Published on 13th. June 2018
We've got THE BEST Festival weekend planned for you!
This weekend, from Friday 15th June - thousands of lovers of vintage, Great British life and style, fashion and of course retro cycling will flock to Friden Grange in the Peak District. Over the last five years the family festival Eroica Britannia has become famous for its global appeal and mass gatherings of retro enthusiasts who come together for a 3-day celebration of the good life and the bike.
Five years ago, Eroica Britannia was a brand new concept to the UK - based on the Italian heritage bike event L'Eroica. Half a decade later Eroica Britannia is one of the biggest vintage gatherings in the UK's festival calendar and has proven itself as both a successful vintage family friendly festival and also as one of the hardest, well respected - yet stylish cycling challenges around - stamping a clear 'something for everyone' message across the weekend!
As well as expanding on the 3-day line-up of live music and family festival activities including The Adventure Kids Club for den building, stargazing and crafts and Great British summertime traditions such as Maypole dancing and Best in Show inspired by village fetes. The festival team have kept cycling firmly at the heart of the weekend and have majored on an inspirational 3-day programme which puts heroes and legends of the cycling world as top billing.
Big adventures and family fun for everyone on the bikes means The Light of Luciano 'Twilight Ride' to the pub on the Friday and The British Cycling Family Ride on Saturday have received record entries. The British Cycling Family Ride sidesteps the usual 'pre-1987' rule book and allows riders and bikes of all ages to take part on a traffic free explorations of the Peak District in high Summer.
"To Motivate and Inspire"
The main message behind Eroica Britannia 2018 is to 'motivate and inspire' and sees double Olympic gold medalist and 9x world champion Victoria Pendleton CBE host a Q&A about bikes, adventures and all things vintage style. Brian Robinson, the first Briton to finish the Tour de France and the first to win a Tour stage will be sharing heroic tales of adventure and endurance. Serial entrepreneur Dave Loughran and Holdsworth team frontman - former World Tour rider and British road race champion Russell Downing will also give a fascinating insight into the Holdsworth brand and their 13-man UCI continental professional squad - Holdsworth Pro Racing which recently competed in the Tour de Yorkshire this year. Paolo Bianchini - the man behind Ciacci, Eroica Britannia's official wine sponsor is a pro-cyclist turned professional winemaker and will be embarking on lectures and discussions around his two passions, cycling and winemaking!
None so inspiring as the thousands of Classic Riders, who will be taking to the trails, tracks. lanes of The Peak District on Sunday 17th June to complete a 30, 60 or 100 mile route on pre-1987 retro road bikes. Food stops on The Ride will feature local favourites Thornbridge 'Handsome Ale' and The Bakewell Pudding Parlour who will also be refreshing and fueling riders on their return to Friden Grange.
Eroica Britannia say "We have had an incredible turn out for The Classic Ride from Eroica Britannia regulars, thousands of new faces and a brilliant turnout from all age ranges and we're delighted to report that female riders are at an all time high."
Revealed! A New Look For The Festival!
Eroica Britannia regulars - especially those who attended Friden Grange in 2017 will immediately notice a new look for the Festival. All of the familiar key structures have moved locations - including Eroica Britannia Headquarters, The Britannia Arms - and even the stage has been replaced by a gorgeous Timber Barn - which is geared up to host 'The Great British Barn Dance' - a giant community 'dance off' on Saturday evening.
The only area of the Festival not to have changed is The Adventure Kids Club - part hosted in the forested section of Friden Grange and the purpose built start-line leading directly onto the trails for the start of The Light of Luciano Twilight Ride, The British Cycling Family Ride and The Classic Ride. Parking and Camping locations have also been moved to accommodate changes and for extra ease of movement for day trippers and weekend visitors.
Eroica Britannia say "Our fifth birthday celebrations is a landmark occasion for us. The UK Festival market is a competitive place to be but we are delighted to report record breaking visitor numbers for both The Festival and The Ride and are proud to be working with a dynamic mix of some of the best shopping experiences, food and drink traders as well as a brilliant 3-day programme of live music and entertainment. Our Sponsors and Partners for our fifth year are each bringing an exciting interactive visitor experience - which we're looking forward to sharing. We're immensely grateful for the on-going support of local, regional businesses and people from all over the UK who work tirelessly with us to host this event. We are looking forward to welcoming everyone to Friden Grange for our birthday celebrations!"
For Site Arrivals, Rider Information, Ticket Downloads and Essential Information relating to Eroica Britannia please visit
Festival Highlights Include
The Great British Barn Dance - hosted on the Saturday evening at the Timber Barn
The Britannia Arms. A British boozer complete with a quintessentially British pub. darts, dominos. Open Till Late!
A Q&A with Victoria Pendleton - Double Olympic Gold medalist and 9 x World Champion - presented by Coloral, the original cycling bottle.
More family fun: a brand new all Adventure Kids Club with den-building, campfires, an outdoor cinema, arts and crafts. Think tipis, forest dwellings, craft corners, forest-craft workshops and exploration exploits!
Discussions, lectures, have your say. The Inner Tube is a new 3-day programme dedicated to the magnificent bike, inspirational riders, tales of freedom, adventure and heroic deeds including Brian Robinson and Holdsworth.
On Sunday 17th June a WWII Spitfire will fly over the Festival declaring The Royal Air Force's Centenary - in Great British style.
Glamping on the Grove. A boutique woodland retreat, dedicated to the art of sleeping well and good living. Book into The Grove for airbeds, linen, hammocks, hairdryers, straighteners and more!
The Light of Luciano 'Twilight' Adventure Pub Ride. We're off on a night time ride to the pub of course! Join us for last orders and a wonderful ride along the trail under the midsummer stars.
The three-day festival builds to a crescendo on Sunday 17th June when thousands of riders will take to the tracks and trails of The Peak District National Park. Riders are welcomed back to the Festival after the ride to a huge welcome home party including Brit nominee Beth Rowley.
Best in Show: the immensely popular vintage dressing up competition will return on Saturday 16th June. Sartorial Style and favourite outfit show-off hosted by The Great British Sewing Bee Judge and King of Savile Row - Patrick Grant with huge prizes for the winners of 1st, 2nd and 3rd!
The British Bazaar: home once again to 150+ uniquely splendid premium vendors, including the World's Greatest Bike Jumble at The Purchasable Exhibition of Treasures and acres of vintage.
GRAZE: the roaming Food and Drink Festival crammed full of local, regional and national award-winning street vendors will fuel riders and festival go-ers alike.
The Family Ride - A free, self-guided ride leaving from the Festival site and taking in the Peak District's very own Strade Bianchi. This is a very special ride for all little heroes and their parents - this year hosted by British Cycling.
Known as the home of the hugely successful Great Britain Cycling Team, British Cycling works to ensure that the inspiration of Olympic, Paralympic and international-level success translates to more people getting on their bikes to contribute to a fitter, healthier, greener Britain.
British Cycling is bringing its new HSBC UK Ready Set Ride programme and resources to the Cycling Nursery each morning to help children and family to have fun together with British Cycling young people specialists. Games, props and imagination filled silliness will help the little ones master the balance bike or develop the techniques to pedal. Young people will be able to develop and test their cycling techniques with the help of HSBC UK Go-Ride Coaches at British Cycling’s skills zone. With challenges and obstacles to suit different abilities, young people can come throughout the weekend and test themselves over and over again to be the fastest they can be through the series of obstacles.
Jimmy's Iced Coffee is returning with Jimmy’s RideClub Arena for 2018! Last year’s hot wheeled extravaganza was a stand-out attraction, as long weekenders and days trippers alike marvelled at the supreme selection of sweet rides! Swing by the arena for an Iced Coffee or something a little stronger, a Jimmy’s White Russian.
Paolo Bianchini - the man behind Ciacci, our official wine sponsor is a pro-cyclist turned professional winemaker! He will be joining us discuss his 2 great passions - cycling and wine! You'll also get to try a great selection of Tuscan wine and classic Italian food pairings. Plus, don't miss a Vineyard Exclusive - a Limited Edition Eroica Britannia bottle of Ciacci!
Leigh Day Cycling are dedicated to getting riders back in the saddle after injury by ensuring vital things are put in place at an early stage to get you back to fitness: a rehab assessment, indoor training equipment and Zwift membership. Stop by the REHAB LAB and take on their Zwift KOM challenge, competing against the clock for a chance to win some awesome prizes. Leigh Day are also hosting The BIKE HOTEL, a free bike store.
Proudly made in Buxton in the heart of the Peak District, Buxton Water is a natural mineral water. At the Buxton Festival camp they'll be handing out Buxton Water at their Festival Water Bar and keeping our Riders Naturally Pumped Up on all three Eroica Britannia rides.
This year we’re pleased to welcome back Hendrick’s Gin; purveyors of the wondrous gin that’s oddly infused with rose and cucumber. They’ll be serving up a peculiar mix of unusual activities, poetic adventures, and of course, delectable Hendrick’s Gin tipples.
Stop by and refuel! Fruit and nut bar brand Eat Natural will be taking its 'Makery' on the road this summer, to celebrate 21 years of making its popular bars and will be kicking off its tour at this year's Eroica Britannia. They'll bring the cacao nibs, strawberry powder and oats, you bring the inspiration (and an apetite ).
The Camping and Caravanning Club return to Eroica Britannia taking us on a true vintage camping journey! From 1901 when the Club was founded as the Association of Cycle Campers, through the kitsch delights of The 60’s, on to modern-day dream machines - showcasing the evolution of the Great British holiday!
Peroni Nastro Azzurro will be offering their finest lager at this year's Eroica Britannia Festival. Founded in a cycling Mecca itself in Lombardy, Italy, Peroni Nastro Azzurro - keeping alive the connection to Eroica Britannia's Tuscan heritage!
Head over to The Folly hosted by Chandon and experience a unique view over the Festival site from the top levels of a luxury 2-tiered festival camp complete of course with a rooftop viewing platform. We invite you to gaze, champagne in-hand - over 100 acres of beautiful woodlands and great expanses of lush green countryside which meets glorious painterly skies. Enjoy a eclectic blend of cocktails, wines, sparkling and champagnes all infused with an beautiful acoustic soundtrack.
Join Ardbeg for a magical weekend, taking whisky-lovers on a journey through time, celebrating of all things ‘Peat & Love’. Expect an immersive Ardbeg tasting experience of the grooviest nature that not only takes your taste buds through the peaty power of Ardbeg, but also transports you to another time.
Eroica Britannia is a celebration of the unmistake Great British community spirit which embodies the origins of Maypole Dancing. We’re delighted invite Maypole Movers to our Fifth Birthday celebrations and and share the traditions of Maypole Dancing with you!