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Glastonbury Festival

The largest greenfield music and performing arts festival in the world

What started as a drug-infused roustabout in a Somerset farm in the 1960s has become one of the biggest music festivals in the world. In 2020 it celebrates its 50th anniversary.

As the Festival itself puts it: “It’s like going to another country, a hip and thrilling Brigadoon that appears every year or so. Coming to Glastonbury involves a fair amount of travel, and probably a queue to get in but, when you get past these impediments, you enter a huge tented city, a mini-state under canvas. British law still applies, but the rules of society are a bit different, a little bit freer. Everyone is here to have a wild time in their own way.”

The scale of Glastonbury is immense. It’s the size of a city - the site is more than a mile and a half across, with a perimeter of about eight and a half miles.

When the 135,000 tickets for the 2019 event went on sale, they disappeared in 36 minutes. Two million people pre-registered to have a shot at buying one.
The operation employs about 50 full-time people. "We have to sell out to break even, because the event costs so much to put on - about £40m," said Emily Eavis in this interview. "Our other goal is to be able to give the charities we support about £2m a year."

There will always be people who say that the [insert date here] Glastonbury Festival was the best one, but worldwide demand for tickets says otherwise. This is a extraordinary celebratory event that continues to stay weird, messy, loud - loved by people of all ages, backgrounds, nationalities, lifestyles, faiths, concepts of fashion and musical taste.

The 2019 festival added a new record: the set by The Killers was reported to have been the loudest on record.

It remains true to founder Michael Eavis’s original objective: “to encourage and stimulate youth culture from around the world in all its forms, including pop music, dance music, jazz, folk music, fringe theatre, drama, mime, circus, cinema, poetry and all the creative forms of art and design, including painting, sculpture and textile art.”


Glastonbury Festival


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