Glastonbury at 40: From hippyville to international music festival
Monday 21 June 2010
Glastonbury Festival has come a long way since its humble beginnings as the
Pilton Pop, Blues & Folk Festival. First held in September 1970, attended by 1,500 and featuring T. Rex as its headline act, founder Michael Eavis would have been hard pressed to predict that 40 years later it would be Europe’s biggest music festival.
Situated in Somerset, between the villages of Pilton and Pylle, six miles east of Glastonbury, and overlooked by Glastonbury Tor, the event is famous for having a large New Age following. The 1971 festival, called the Glastonbury Fayre, was held over the June summer solstice, attracting scores of hippies who danced naked and performed rites to welcome midsummer. The second ever Glastonbury saw the establishment of the now iconic Pyramid Stage, on which David Bowie headlined.
Despite growing exponentially over the past four decades, Glastonbury was initially organised as a free festival and its founders have been keen to maintain a not-for-profit approach since then. It has a long running relationship with Oxfam and other charities, and it is run primarily by volunteers who are paid with festival access, food and board.
Glastonbury expanded massively in the 1990s and attracts a much, much bigger crowd than it did in its nascent form - In 2009 more than 137,000 people bought tickets.The festival seems to have remained cool across several generations, by securing the best bands of the day and maintaining its ethical values. It has a huge celebrity following, has helped establish ‘festival chic,’ and despite many rainy washout years (and a freak sales blip in 2008), when tickets go on sale they are sold out within 24 hours.
With the doors of Glastonbury 2010 due to open on Wednesday, The Independent Online has been rummaging through the festival organisers’ photo albums to provide you with a nostalgic look at the last 40 years of the festival. From dancing hippies, to angry punks, dazed rockers and indie kids. See if you can spot yourself...or your parents!
Click here or on the image to launch Warning! Some images contain scenes of nudity
BBC Trust agrees to axe channel from TV in favour of digital moveTV
Final Top Gear reviewTV
FestivalsFive ways to avoid the portable toilets
Jurassic WorldThe results are completely brilliant
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 David Cameron refers to 83-year-old Labour MP Dennis Skinner as 'Jurassic Park'
- 2 iPhone 7 (or iPhone 6S) leaked pictures show similarities to older model — but Apple is fixing the biggest issue of all
- 3 'Help me I'm trapped in a factory' messages keep being found on bottles of vitamin water
- 4 German ethics council calls for incest between siblings to be legalised by Government
- 5 Alwaleed bin Talal: Saudi Prince to donate entire $32bn fortune to charity
Game of Thrones season 6: Daenerys actress Emilia Clarke says '50/50 chance' Jon Snow is alive
Amy, film review: Beautiful film reveals ugly truth behind singer's downward spiral
'Dukes of Hazzard' pulled from screens by CBS as outcry over Confederate flag grows
London Has Fallen trailer release branded 'extremely insensitive' ahead of 10th anniversary of 7/7 bombings
What if Nicolas Cage played every character in Game of Thrones?
The moment a Queen's Guard soldier lost it and drew his gun at annoying tourist
Greece crisis: IMF was pushed around by Angela Merkel and Nicholas Sarkozy – and now it is being humiliated
'I wish the BBC would stop calling it Islamic State' – David Cameron unleashes frustration at broadcaster
Greece crisis: The wider lesson is that it’s time to abandon this failed experiment in currencies
Girl, 7, stares down hate preacher at Ohio festival with pro-LGBT rainbow flag gesture
Forget little green men – aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert