Readipop Festival 2019 guide

Readipop Festival returns to Christchurch Meadows for its fourth year in 2019 with its strongest and most diverse music line up yet. Organised by music education charity Readipop, the three-day celebration of music, community and Reading brings our town together over a line of retro bands, DJs, top local acts, workshops, food and arts. It’s also a bargain at only £35 for three days of music, with proceeds from ticket sales going back in to the charity.

When and where is Readipop Festival?

Friday 12 – Sunday 14 July, 2019 at Christchurch Meadows, Caversham. The easiest way to get there from town is to walk across the Christchurch pedestrian bridge.

So, which bands are playing?

So far,  this is the biggest musical line up at Readipop Festival so far. There’s a lot of love for the ’90s in the line up this year, with three big names representing different iconic ’90s genres headlining each day of the festival.

On the Friday it’s ‘90s acid jazz pioneers Brand New Heavies who release their 30th anniversary album, featuring Beverley Knight and Mark Ronson, two weeks before their festival appearance. Listen out for their top 20 hits ‘Dream on Dreamer’ and ‘Midnight at the Oasis’.

Saturday’s headliner are ambient house duo The Orb, famed for their psychedelic visuals during live sets. Expect a greatest hits set backed by a special visual show.

Headlining the Sunday are Britpop veterans Sleeper, who have reunited after 21 years and release a new album in March this year before embarking on a UK tour – where tickets to see them alone are £25.

Elsewhere on the bill is Youtube’s comedy video editor Cassetteboy and his sidekick DJ Rubbish for a set described as “party tunes and mixed with people off the telly. Rihanna, Jeremy Paxman, Madonna, Gregg Wallace, Daft Punk, Alan Sugar, everyone”.

Image: Andy Parsons

Also look out for ‘00s electronic duo Audiobullys, Jurassic 5’s Soup (who played the launch party event in January), backed by his seven piece band the Fullee Love Collective, Mark Morriss from The Bluetones and reformed ‘80s indiepoppers The Primitives.

As well as all that, the second line up announcement features soul, disco and funk from Norman Jay – one of the pioneers DJs on KISS FM back in its pirate radio days and is co-founder of Good Times Sound System who took over Ladbrooke Grove for the Notting Hill Carnival until 2014.

Ibibio Sound Machine
Ibibio Sound Machine

There’s also West African funk and electronica from Ibibio Sound Machine, fronted by Nigerian singer Eno Williams and Levellers’ frontman Mark Chadwick will play a mix of tracks from his two solo albums ‘All the Pieces’ and ‘Moment’ as well as some Levellers classics.


And fans of 80s indie punk should head to see Fuzzbox, where two of the original band play a set of hits from their top 5 gold album ‘Big Bang’ and more.

Local bands announced so far are Saltwater Sun, The Keep Cats and The Skangsters, who do their fun Specials tribute set.

What else is there besides music?

Readipop Festival

Yes, there’s more here too this year. As well as street food stalls, there’ll be an Etsy craft market with local artists and makers selling their wares, workshops on music, circus skills & dance. There’s also usually a samba parade from local drum group The Beatroots. For the first year, there’ll also be boat trips up the Thames, more details on that later.

How much are tickets?

Weekend tickets are £35 and are on sale now. Under 14s with an adult get in free. Day ticket prices will be released closer to the festival. Book your tickets here.

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