7/8/9 July 2022

The day Frank Turner came to my tent, by Elly Till

Elly Till won a dream prize: a pair of tickets to 2000trees 2013 and a unique performance at her tent by our headliner Frank Turner, thanks to Kerrang! online. Here’s her story…

Just a quick reminder that tickets go on sale on January 27th, get involved!

Roll on the summer! Andy, 2000trees

Elly Till and Frank Turner at 2000trees Festival 2013

Elly Till and Frank Turner at 2000trees Festival 2013


“Congratulations on winning a pair of tickets to the 2000trees Festival…”

This was the message greeting me when I finally logged into my email after a week’s camping in a wifi blackspot in Cornwall. If I’m honest, I couldn’t even remember entering the competition with Kerrang! And I never win things. EVER. My first thought was this was a wind up, so I read and re-read the email, then read it some more. Not only had I won two tickets, but Frank Turner was going to perform for me, at my tent!

I knew nothing about 2000trees, and even after checking the website I was still unsure what to expect. I’d gathered that it was going to be smaller than the festivals I’d been to previously. Not to worry though because just like other festivals I’d been to, there would be mud. And judging from the 2012 photos, there was going to be a heck of a lot of mud. Mud was almost guaranteed (well I was wrong!). There wasn’t time for anymore research; it was Tuesday and 2000trees started on Thursday. I had 36 hours to negotiate more time off work, pack the camping gear back into the car and get on the road.

When Thursday arrived, it was a gorgeous sunny day. Best pack the wellies though, just in case……

Elly and her sister relax as Frank Turner performs beside her tent at 2000trees Festival 2013

Elly and her sister relax as Frank Turner performs beside her tent at 2000trees Festival 2013


My sister and I jumped in the car full of excitement, and a little trepidation as to what the next four days held in store. The conversation in the car centred mainly on Frank. Will he really turn up? Do you think there has been a mistake? Am I too old? I’m 31, surely when they find out I’m so old they will give the prize to someone else? Maybe there was an age limit and I’m over it? It didn’t matter what I did, I just couldn’t get my head around it. Frank Turner, whose gigs I’ve been to countless times, Frank Turner who I had a little teeny, tiny, 12-year-old girl-style crush on, was going to be at my tent playing my favourite songs? It sounded too good to be true.

We arrived at trees to be greeted by the waving hands and smiling faces of the stewards and made our way to the guest list queue (I felt rather special actually!) where we waited for Andy. Oh Andy. Lovely lovely Andy. He confirmed that yes, Frank most definitely would be coming to my tent, and right at that moment it actually hit me and I started getting nervous. But it was nothing a nice warm cider while pitching the tent wouldn’t settle. We found a great spot to camp and once the last tent peg was in, and the airbeds were inflated, off we went to explore 2000trees, quickly discovering that OneHugeTree was probably a better name! The sun was shining, the atmosphere was building, and the White Russians in The Big Lebowski bar were flowing. So far, so good.

Thursday went by in a flash and before we knew it, it was Friday – it was time. The record company found me and assured me ‘Frank will be 10 minutes’. A few people from behind the scenes at trees had started congregating around my tent. I suddenly felt very nervous – they were all watching me.

So with cider to settle the nerves I waited, and it was not long before I saw him. It was like a dream, and he was God walking towards me, guitar case in hand! I don’t mind admitting I was like a kid at Christmas, I just wanted to throw my arms around him, but I restrained myself and tried to act cool…………………

We all got comfortable and Frank played 3 of my favourite songs, belting them out with such gusto all I could do was sit, mesmerised by what I was witnessing in front of me. I wanted to get up and dance, sing my lungs out, but my legs would not stop shaking and I appeared to have lost the ability to string a sentence together! To outsiders I must have looked really unimpressed but I was in shock, pure awe at the situation I found myself in.

VIDEO: Frank Turner performs for Elly Till at her tent, 2000trees Festival 2013

An amazing performer and a true gent, Frank then stayed at the tent and signed autographs for the groups of fans that had gathered once word spread. He posed for loads of photos and he even let me get my hands on his beloved guitar. ‘Are you left handed?’ Frank asked me, ‘no’ ‘well then you are holding it upside down…’.

Crowds gather as Frank Turner performs for Elly Till

Crowds gather as Frank Turner performs for Elly Till


It took a while for it all to sink in once he had left. Still amazed by what had happened, I was in a bit of a daze. A few latecomers turned up and asked ‘was Frank really just at this tent?’, ‘have we missed him?’. For 45 minutes, on July 12th 2013, I was the most popular girl in camp!

Looking back now it is all a bit surreal. Sometimes I forget it happened and then when I remember a huge smile spreads across my face. We saw some great acts that weekend, some we had heard of, some we hadn’t and that is one of the many reasons that 2000trees has been my favourite ever festival by a long way. It may be small in size but it is huge in atmosphere. What a wonderful festival to be part of – Andy and the team should be proud. Only 168 days to go…

Elly Till

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You only have 52 weekends a year, make sure the 7-9th July 2022 is a belter!