Secret Garden Party was simply out of this world for festival goers

Secret Garden Party 2016,

Secret Garden Party 2016, - Credit: Archant

There was an other-worldly feel around Abbots Ripton as thousands of people descended on the village for the annual Secret Garden Party event.

The theme for this year’s festival was Gardener’s Guide to the Galaxy and festival goers were certainly in the spirit of things with plenty of weird and wonderful outfits on display over the four-day event, which ran from Thursday to Sunday.

Among headline acts at this year’s event, the Caribou, Air, Maribou State and veteran reggae DJ David Rodigan.

Away from the music, there was plenty for visitors to enjoy, including fairground rides, games, a film tent, quizzes, stalls, performers, and a children’s area.

The festival was launched in 2014 as an alternative to more mainstream music festivals, and has built a reputation around its variety of music and activities.

According to Cambridgeshire police, 70 crimes were recorded for the Secret Garden Party between when the event opened on Thursday and midday on Monday, a fall from the 120 recorded in 2015.

These include 35 thefts, two robberies of mobile phones, five violent offences, two thefts of vehicles and 26 drugs offences.

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For the first time this year, the festival introduced a facility where festival goers could test their illegal drugs before taking them. The scheme was launched in agreement with police and was designed to prevent overdoses or poisoning.

About 200 people used the service, managed by drug-testing organisation The Loop.

Superintendent Laura Hunt said: “Together with the event organisers, a range of robust measures were put in place to detect drugs at the Secret Garden Party, including the use of sniffer dogs.

“The safety of people attending the event – the ‘Gardeners’ - is our number one priority. The work of the charity, The Loop, focuses on harm reduction and provides important drug safety messages to festival goers.”

According to police, almost 2,000 seizures of drugs were made over the festival period.