Glastonbury 2014: Things you never knew about the iconic Somerset music festival

Michael Eavis founded the first festival in 1970 and just 1500 people attended

The gates opened yesterday and festival-goers continue to arrive in their thousands ahead of the first big day of music on Friday.

Glastonbury Festival is renowned around the world as a fantastic celebration of music and the arts, with many performances now considered among the greatest ever.

But what don't we know about Michael Eavis' Somerset extravaganza?

Around 3 million gallons of water are used during the festival

This staggering amount of water is used from the taps provided during the five days of the festival. Since the provided taps have used drinking water, the amount consumed has rocketed, but rum and gin consumption is probably still higher.

Free milk used to be given out

At the first ever festival in 1970, when the musical spectacular was known as Glastonbury Fayre, the £1 ticket included free milk. The debut of the festival started the day after the death of Jimi Hendrix.

There is an entire section dedicated to holistic therapies

Glastonbury is renowned for its weird and wacky areas, and this is one of them. It seems to be that music is almost becoming secondary with the masses of other entertainments and activities available, so if you fancy some alternative healing, head over to this section.

The Kinks were supposed to headline the first ever festival

Hard-core Glastonbury fans may know this, but after failing to show up in 1970 T. Rex filled in for The Kinks. Most didn’t seem to be too disappointed with this, with Marc Dolan’s performance going down in festival history.

 

During the festival, the same amount of electricity as the city of bath will be used

Whether it’s extravagant light shows or providing mobile phone charging points, Glastonbury uses a massive amount of electricity over the 5 days. It has been worked out that around the same amount of electricity will be used as a city the size of Bath uses in a 5 day period.

People didn’t want ‘popular’ bands

In the 1980s there was uproar among festival goers that popular bands like The Smiths shouldn’t be playing on the pyramid stage. After Morrissey’s performance in 1984, fans of the festival said that the pyramid stage isn’t about cool, mainstream acts. How things have changed.

People sit in the sunshine as the Glastonbury Festival People sit in the sunshine as the Glastonbury Festival

The first ever festival was attended by 1500 people. Now it is up to 200,000

Year on year the number of people attending Glastonbury have spiralled, reaching new heights every year. 2014 is expected to see around 200,000 people cross its gates.

The Killers left their guitarist at a service station en route to headline

On the way to Glastonbury Festival in 2005 The Killers left their guitarist Dave Keuning at a motor service station. The act wasn’t intentional and as soon as they realised they raced back to pick the stranded musician up and Keuning almost missed their set on the Pyramid Stage.

You’re not allowed to wee in the bushes

Anyone that has ever been to Glastonbury will know this, but it’s still funny that people have to patrol the bushes for rogue wee-ers.

Read more: Best smaller bands to see at Glastonbury
Glastonbury line-up clashes
Glastonbury festival-goers arrive despite rain threat
Arts and Entertainment

Great British Bake Off
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

    Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

    But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
    Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

    Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

    Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
    Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

    Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

    Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
    Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

    Britain's 24-hour culture

    With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
    Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

    The addictive nature of Diplomacy

    Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
    Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

    Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

    Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
    8 best children's clocks

    Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

    Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
    Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

    Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

    After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
    Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

    How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

    Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
    Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

    'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

    In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
    Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

    The Arab Spring reversed

    Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
    King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

    Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

    Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
    Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

    Who is Oliver Bonas?

    It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
    Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

    Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

    However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
    60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

    60 years of Scalextric

    Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones