80s icons and older rockers centre stage

Some of the fans who dressed 80's style for the festival
Some of the fans who dressed 80's style for the festival

Clumber Park took a step back in time – from older rockers to 80s icons at the Rocking in the Park and Flashback festivals.

Starting on Friday with Rocking in the Park, an evening of classic rock got the weekend’s festivities under way with artists like Caravan and Michael Chapman easing the older generations into things.

Prog rock legends Asia performed a great set to an appreciative audience, with the legendary Carl Palmer still showing why he is one of the greatest drummers still around.

On Saturday drawers and wardrobes were emptied of old clothes as well as a good dose of fancy dress from a packed audience of about 8,000 for the Flashback Festival which took many festival-goers back to younger days in the 1980s.

Frankie T-Shirts were there en masse, along with Smurfs, Freddie and Madonna lookalikes to mention a few –some travelling from as far afield as Cambridge and Gloucester for the event.

Opening were Dr & The Medics whose inflatable Daleks had a mind of their own as a gust of wind set them off across the stage, cleared away by a Cyberman of course.

Then on came the Doctor, who was also compere for the day and got the crowd going straight away, ending their set with Spirit in the Sky.

Carol Decker, from T’Pau, was next on stage, working her way through their hits. Even almost 30 years after bursting onto the music scene, her voice still sounded as good as it did when we all heard China in Your Hand for the first time.

Go West were next to hit the stage, with Peter Cox having the front of stage packed with women. They blasted through their set with audience participation and gave one of the best renditions of Sex on Fire you will hear anywhere, before closing with King of Wishful Thinking from the Pretty Woman movie.

Roland Gift, who has carved out a good solid solo career since Fine Young Cannibals, was next up.

His silky smooth voice eased through his set of FYC hits such as Suspicious Minds and She Drives Me Crazy.

He was followed by Jimmy Somerville who really upped the tempo with most of the audience on their feet dancing and singing along as he covered the Communards material finishing with the classic Don’t Leave Me This Way.

As the evening twilight closed in, former M People singer Heather Small took to the stage – with her giant voice still sounding superb.

Finishing the evening were two more icons in the shape of Rick Astley and Tony Hadley who both turned in great sets.