All About Bloodstock Open Air Festival

July 27, 2022
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Calling at metalheads | © @bloodstock / Facebook

Walton-on-Trent, UK

Open air

L – 5k-20k

Metal, Rock


Alternative, Underground

+3 Days

Bloodstock Open Air is the ultimate holy grail for all metalheads. The festival is also dubbed as one of the UK’s largest independent metal events.

The festival was created in 2001 by artist Paul Raymond Gregory and his business partner Vince Brotheridge. It is a four-day festival taking place in the middle of August.

It is held in the Catton Hall lush green field, nestled in the charming village of Derbyshire’s Walton-on-Trent, in central England.

Renowned for its gripping heavy metal lineups, Bloodstock Open Air is a rock fanatics’ annual pilgrimage.

Fans of heavy metal flock to the little English village to relish in the 360 approach the event has towards festival entertainment.

Bloodstock Open Air Festival 2022’s edition dates are 11-14 August 2022. Go get your Bloodstock Open Air Festival tickets on Soundclub, the social app for live music experiences covering +2,000 festivals worldwide.

Bloodstock Open Air Festival 2022 lineup will include +120 artists. Among Bloodstock Open Air Festival headliners to look for we can find Lamb of God, Judas Priest, Hatebreed, and Testament.

Here’s everything you need to know about Bloodstock Open Air Festival.

Who’s ready for some heavy metal? | © @Bloodstockfestivals / YouTube

1. Bloodstock Open Air Festival is the mecca for metalheads

Arch Enemy grips the crowd at the 2017 edition | © @bloodstock / Facebook 

Boasting over 120 international metal acts across four stages, Bloodstock Open Air (BOA) is the ultimate heavy metal festival for metalheads.

The festival is the epicenter of heavy metal and hard rock main genres, but its music repertoire expands through their subgenres, such as thrash and gothic. 

Since its inception in 2001, Bloodstock Open Air has been known as a festival created “by the fans for the fans.”

Featuring the biggest names in rock and metal, it is ranked among the UK’s top 10 rock music festivals. Roaring names from the music industry performed at the festival, including the names of Devin Townsend, Sabaton, and Nightwish

2. Bloodstock Open Air started as an indoor festival

Bloodstock Open Air Festival adopted the outdoor location concept back in 2005 when it took place on the Walton-on-Trent civil parish.

During its early days, the festival was all about the indoors mantra. Back in the day, it was held at Derby Assembly Rooms and was simply known as Bloodstock.

In the beginning, the metal festival featured only one stage, but added another one in 2006. As Bloodstock Open Air grew over the years, its stage number blossomed – which called for a new site that could accommodate the fresh additions.

The open-air and wide space of Catton Hall has been liberating for artists and festival-goers alike | © @bloodstock / Facebook

Finding its forever home in the Catton Hall Estate back in 2005, the open grounds have been a success ever since, holding crowds of 20,000 per day.

3. Bloodstock has a dedicated stage for upcoming metal bands

Bloodstock is a huge supporter of promising talents, prouding itself as committed to promoting up-and-coming bands.

With the aim of transforming top-notch metal music into a blossoming industry, the festival features a stage that’s solely dedicated to showcasing gifted artists and bands.

Bloodstock infuses new blood into the music scene | © @bloodstock / Facebook 

Dubbed the New Blood Stage, it invites lesser-known music heroes from a wide range of metal and rock backgrounds to perform – be it metalcore or progressive rock.

The festival showcases no less than 40 promising bands, allowing them to learn the ropes from metal legends while networking with industry experts.

4. Bloodstock’s mascot is the stuff of legends

One of the intriguing facets of Bloodstock Open Air is the festival’s mascot – S’Tan. It was created by festival co-founder Paul R. Gregory, an acclaimed artist best known for his J.R.R. Tolkein-inspired fantasy artwork and jaw-dropping album covers. 

The story behind the mascot’s creation goes like this: Paul designed it based on the Derby Ram tall tale – a mammoth beast – in whose blood drowned the butcher who slaughtered it. 

The Derby Ram was chosen to further connect with Derby – where the festival takes place. Since then, S’Tan has become quite the face of Bloodstock Open Air.

© @bloodstockopenair / Instagram

5. Bloodstock is a pro at warming up its hyped crowds

Get Bloodstock-ready with Metal 2 The Masses | © @bloodstock / Facebook

At Bloodstock, the mood for everything metal is created way before the festival begins.

Starting in April, the festival teams up with local rock pubs and clubs to get the vibe going in the festival’s run-up.

Called Metal 2 The Masses, the festival organizes Bloodstock-themed club nights across the country.

If you’re new to the festival, this is your chance to get a taste of BOA’s band tunes and win two weekend tickets.

6. Bloodstock keeps you entertained beyond the music

Beyond the heavy headbanging and thundering on-stage music, Bloodstock has quite a fun and friendly vibe.

The festival ensures metalheads are engaged and entertained throughout their music journey with a bunch of exciting options. Get ready to get your mind blown at The Rock and Metal Museum, which exhibits astonishing metal music-themed art. 

Rock and Metal Museum is a must-visit | © @bloodstock / Facebook

There are also several performances that are doomed to take your breath away, such as fire dancers and karaoke sessions.

7. Lemmy’s Bar is an tear-jerking spot at Bloodstock

Raise a glass for Lenny at Lenny’s | © @bloodstock / Facebook

Paying tribute to the late metal maestro Ian ‘Lemmy’ Kilmister – the former frontman of Motörhead – the festival’s main bar bears his name.

Lemmy, who was a big influence on today’s metal bands, had a very close relationship with Bloodstock’s organizers.

As if this scenario isn’t emotional enough, the bar was inaugurated in 2016 by Motörhead member and Lemmy’s bandmate, guitarist Phil Campbell.

8. Bloodstock is where you can show off your Battle Jackets

Attending Bloodstock would be incomplete without sporting the famed Bloodstock Battle Jackets. With the eye-popping artwork associated with the festival, Bloodstock brings out exceptional cut-offs as part of its merch.

Patches from Bloodstock’s past going all the way back till 2001 are available for fest fans. Bedeck yourself in some cool designs to amp up the metal mania.

You’re not Bloodstock-ready without the Battle Vests | © @bloodstock / Facebook

9. Bloodstock is a family-friendly festival

Behind all that rugged coating and the devil-worshiping misleading image, Bloodstock is pure at heart and believes in the true power of music.

Mini Bloodstockers are a common sight at the festival | © @bloodstock / Facebook

The festival opens its arms to families with children, ensuring the premises are child-friendly and safe.

After all, what could be more wholesome than sharing the hardcore love for everything metal with your family?

10. Get spoiled for choice while camping at Bloodstock

Camping at Bloodstock is truly a one-of-a-kind experience. The festival leaves no stone unturned in ensuring ample comfort for its attendees. 

Named The Serpent’s Lair, the fest’s generous camping site is the go-to place to unwind after a heavy session of headbanging at a luxurious VIP retreat. The campsite provides numerous options, according to your budget and the number of people.

Apart from the choice of pitching your own tents, you can choose from a range of exclusive facilities set up by the festival. There are nine camping packages available, from furnished accommodations such as funky Podpads to pre-erected tents.

Choose your camping option at the serene Catton Park | © @bloodstock / Facebook

Whether you’re a heavy metal worshiper or a newbie exploring the genre, the Bloodstock festival is a must-attend music experience. The festival is commendable for its commitment to uphold hard rock and heavy metal, thriving the genres for the next generations of metalheads.


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