Who are you?
EMF is a non-profit event run entirely by a group of dedicated volunteers. EMF 2018 is the fourth major festival we've held in the UK, and a lot of us also help run other festivals in Germany and the Netherlands.
Can I help out?
EMF is organised entirely by volunteers. The event's success relies on attendees helping out to the extent they are willing.
More information on helping out during the event will appear on the Volunteering page in due course. If you are able to help plan and work before the event, check out the Teams page to see which teams need help.
How accessible is EMF?
We take accessibility very seriously, and we want to let as many people experience the fun of EMF. However, it is ultimately an event in the field, and we can't work miracles with our limited budget.
The site will be well-lit during the event, and we will aim to cover access to the stages with trackway. Travelling between stages may take some time. There will be accessible toilets and the current plan includes an accessible shower with a wheelchair ramp. We cannot guarantee 24/7 power, so it must not be relied on for medical needs, but the power infrastructure team will be on call through the night.
If you will be attending with a carer, they are entitled to a free ticket. Please [mailto:[email address removed] email us] once you've got your ticket so we can allocate your carer a ticket. Registered assistance dogs will be allowed.
If you have any other accessibility concerns, please [mailto:[email address removed] drop us an email].
Is EMF family-friendly?
Yes! We want EMF to be a great event for hackers of all ages.
In 2014 and 2016 we had licensed, free childcare provided by the award-winning Nipperbout, which was exceedingly well-received. We're aiming to provide this again, subject to sponsorship being secured (childcare is expensive!). There will be a designated family camping area, and a whole track of events and workshops for young people.
EMF has a comprehensive lost-child policy with DBS-checked staff available to help out.
There are a number of things to bear in mind:
- Children under the age of 14 must be accompanied by an adult at all times.
- There will be dangerous things on site, but they will be clearly marked.
- Licensed alcohol sales are only for people of age 18 and over. Bar staff will ask for ID.
What does the ticket price include?
The ticket price includes admission to the event, admission to all of the talks, and most of the workshops. Some workshop organisers charge a fee in order to cover material costs, and places on most workshops will be limited.
Your ticket also includes:
- Tent pitch
- Showers & Toilets
- Fast internet
Can I bring a caravan/camper van?
Yes, we will have a dedicated camper van area on site, within the main fence, with 16A power provided. You'll need to buy an additional camper van ticket.
As we restrict vehicle movements on site for safety, you may not be able to enter or leave in a vehicle during the public opening of the event. Plan to arrive early and leave late.
We unfortunately can't provide water hookups or drainage/emptying facilities. You will not be able to empty your tank during the event.
Do volunteers get a free ticket?
Everyone who attends is expected to buy a ticket, including the founders and the core organisation team. So many people contribute to running EMF that it would be financially impossible to give everyone who helps out a free ticket, and unfair to draw a line past which volunteers receive free tickets.
The sole exception to this rule are first aiders, who must be trained to the high standards of our first aid team, and are expected to carry out three eight-hour shifts in return for a free ticket.
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Planning your Attendance
Where is it? How can I get there?
The EMF site is Eastnor Castle Deer Park, located just east of Ledbury, Herefordshire.
By train, we are close to Ledbury station which is around 3 hours from London Paddington and one hour from Birmingham New Street. We will be running a shuttle bus service from Ledbury station to the site.
The closest major airport is Birmingham.
Also see Travel for more details
When can I arrive? When do I have to leave by?
The site will open to ticket holders on Friday morning. All ticket holders must leave the site by noon (12pm) on Monday. Talks and workshops won't start until after midday on the Friday so there's plenty of time to arrive.
We will be there before and afterwards setting up and packing up. If you want to help with this, please let us know (by emailing [mailto:[email address removed] [email address removed]]) and we'll let you know when you can turn up. If we have not confirmed that we're expecting you before or after the event you will not be admitted to the site. Anyone arriving before Friday morning or staying beyond Monday afternoon will be expected to help with set-up and tear-down (both of which are mostly manual labour).
When do things kick off?
The talks and workshops will begin after lunch on Friday, although people will be setting up earlier in the day.
Talks and workshops run daily through to the evening, although we expect villages will be doing things late into the night!
Will there be a bar?
Yes, we'll be running a volunteer-staffed licensed bar selling beer and wine, as well as soft drinks and the hacker energy drink Club Mate. Far from the usual crap festival beer, we will be serving real ale from local breweries with all profits going towards making the next iteration of Electromagnetic Field more awesome.
The bar on-site opening hours are subject to licensing which will be finalised soon.
Can I bring pets?
Sorry, animals (except registered assistance animals) are not allowed.
Can I smoke?
Smoking (including vaping) is not allowed in any of the event tents or in the food/bar area. Elsewhere, please be considerate and very careful to extinguish your cigarettes to avoid setting the dry grass on fire. Please make sure cigarette butts are disposed of in rubbish bins rather than just thrown on the ground as the site is used by livestock at other times of the year, and it's a pain for the clean up crew to pick them up after the camp is over!
Can I bring X/Y/Z?
Please let us know if it's going to be large/tall/use a lot of power/be noisy or anything else you think we should know. We don't plan on stopping people bringing the latest cool laser helmet for shark 3d printer arduino powered UAV thing, but we need to plan for it.
Things requiring special permission and may not be allowed: balloons, sky lanterns and the like.
Can I bring/fly my drone?
Yes - lots of attendees will be bringing drones and there will be a dedicated UAV flying field. It is against UK law to fly drones over the campsite unless you hold permission from the UK Civil Aviation Authority. EMF will be enforcing this rule, and for safety we will not allow UAVs to be flown over the site without prior arrangement.
What if I don't like camping?
Whilst we'd strongly recommend camping (so much happens late into the evening and it's a lot more fun) we realise not everyone wants to. There are several hotels in Ledbury.
What are villages?
Villages are areas of the campsite self-organised by attendees. The idea is that like-minded people get together, set up in an area of the campsite and enjoy each other's company. Villages are often set up around a topic or existing group (e.g. lock-picking or a hackspace). Some of them will run their own events parallel to the main schedule (for example last year one village hosted a weekend-long LAN party whilst another ran workshops on ring-making).
If you want to find out more, or see which villages are already proposed see the villages page
You don't need to join a village to attend.