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Every summer, YMCA Fairthorne Manor hosts the largest festival in the world for young people with a caring responsibility at home.

Created in 2000 and run in partnership with The Children’s Society, the weekend provides opportunities for young people to enjoy a break from their responsibilities, have fun, make new friends and have their voices heard on issues that affect them.   Consultation with young carers has resulted in two changes in legislation to help support their needs and those of their families.

Young carers' festival

2022 festival

Although the pandemic has meant that we’ve been unable to offer the festival in its normal format in 2020 and 2021, we are delighted to announce that we are back for 2022!   

We’re returning the festival to its former glory from Friday 1st to Sunday 3rd July 2022 and are busy planning the festival programme, so gather your group and get organising!  There will be the core ingredients of fireworks, radio station, Voice Zone, silent disco, chill out/pamper zone, adventurous activities and more…

If you need to contact us, call us on 01489 785228 or

young carer

Who is the festival for?

The Young Carers Festival is primarily aimed at secondary school aged young carers from 11-16 years, with all young carers attending as part of an organised group.  For 2022, we are adjusting the age group so that young carers aged 17 that have missed out in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID pandemic can attend.   As ever, group leaders are responsible for the welfare of their young carers.

If you’re a young carer but not associated with a support group, find the the local group in your area via The Children’s Society, one of our festival partners.  The festival is a great way to meet new friends or get to know others better.

young carers

Booking information

Places booked for the Young Carers Festival include camping (you have the choice of YMCA tents or bringing your own), all meals and a full programme of fun stuff including bands, outdoor activities, fireworks and more!

Prices for 2022 are as follows:

  • YMCA tents £115 per person (£105 Early Bird rate)
  • Own tents  £105 per person (£95 Early Bird rate)

Early Bird places must be booked by Friday 29th April 2022.  Once your booking is confirmed, we’ll send group leaders further information about the festival.  Day passes are not available for this event.

young carers

What happens at the festival?

For young carers, the weekend is yours! Chill out under a tree, listen to the onsite radio station and chat to friends or dip into the packed programme of outdoor activities, live bands, fairground rides, karaoke and much more. 

Your ticket price includes all activities, meals and tented accommodation (book one of our tents or bring your own) – the only thing you may need money for is treats from the Manor shop or the onsite cafe outside of meal times.

2019 YCF highlights

2019 was the last “full” version of the festival and it’s returning in 2022!

 2021 Festival 

100 young people travelled to Fairthorne for a mini-festival in a day – check out the video below.


Fairthorne Manor is located midway between Southampton and Portsmouth in Hampshire. Find us at YMCA Fairthorne Manor, Curdridge, Southampton, Hampshire SO30 2GH, just a mile outside of Botley.