The event, the myth, the legend: my experience as a Roctostock first timer

  • August 15, 2023
  • Reading time: 4 min

I started at OG in May 2023, and right from the outset, everyone echoed the same sentiment: Roctostock was an event not to be missed.

Dubbed  ‘Rocto-Cirque-Du-Stockleil’, this year’s theme was circus: which honestly filled me with both excitement and dread. How do you dress like you’re from the circus and still look cool? This answer is that you absolutely cannot.

Roctostock group photo

I was completely taken by surprise by how much of an effort people made with their costumes. This is a serious task, and Octopedes DO NOT mess about. Some of my favourite costumes included Katie as a knife thrower, and Pete as the most terrifying and hilarious mime I have ever seen. And last, but certainly not least, the star of the show…Gerald (G)! G went as such a convincing bearded lady, that upon viewing the photos, my family actually asked: “How did that lady have such a good beard?”.

The winning team: G, Katie, Matt, Phoebe, Shevaun, Toby….and Pete the mime photobombing

In true British style, the weather was completely unpredictable. The collection of onesie animals was slowly melting. Some attendees were smart enough to wear sunscreen, but others (me) thought they were stronger than the sun and had to deal with the outrageous burn.

Though most people camp at Roctostock, that’s not really my vibe. But, it was still wildly entertaining to see what my colleagues had come with. Some had set up little homes, deck chairs were out in full force, and there were even mini kitchen set-ups. Shoutout to the people that brought their own mattress: I commend your dedication to a good night’s sleep. Others were not so well equipped. Lottie and Emma managed to set their tent up inside out, and Luke took charge of his managerial role by directing helpful/unhelpful (delete as appropriate) orders at Jordan and Sarah while they grappled with their huge tent.

Kirstie and her tent setup

Of course, it wouldn’t be a true circus experience without some games, right? Although the overall juggling, tight-rope walking, and hula hooping skills were lacking, Suzy surprised us all by managing to unicycle around every single team (we later found out that Suzy has a unicycle in her car).  It’s safe to say that every team had an amazing time bonding with people from outside of their working groups. Although, it’s also worth noting the competitive behaviour, which included; bribing the judges, peeking at scorecards, and sweet-talking anyone that would listen (not naming any names).

Nicola, Jamie, and Natasha

The band deserves a huge shout-out. With only a few actual practices under their belt, Jessica and Emma’s singing blew us away! Jamie (lead guitar), Billy (bass guitar), and (most importantly) ‘Jamie’s fit brother ’ (drums), also did not disappoint. I never thought that I would be seeing Toby jumping around in a mosh pit, or Lottie proposing during Taylor Swift’s Love Story . Every single person that attended Rocto-Cirque-Du-Stockleil was at the top of their dancing game – and by that, I mean there were some atrocious dad moves being thrown about.

Band To Sales

There is something about karaoke that really brings a special something out in people. I can’t not mention the star performance by Ali. Ali’s rendition of Kate Bush’s Wuthering Heights was genuinely nothing short of spectacular. The dancing and the high notes left everyone completely speechless. Luke Smith also impressed everyone with his secret super voice. If he ever wants to leave PR, I feel like a Robbie Williams tribute act could be calling his name.

I feel very lucky to be at a company that has such a strong focus on getting the whole team involved. I was able to chat with colleagues that I wouldn’t normally speak to in the office in a relaxed environment.

Overall, my first Roctostock experience was something that made me feel like I was officially an Octopede, and I’m super excited to see what’s in store for next year!

Roctostock 5am. The morning after the night before.

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