Glastonbury 2014: Festival-goers arrive despite rain threat as gates officially open

Thousands of people are expected to set up camp on the Somerset farm

Festival-goers are arriving in their thousands at Glastonbury today, after the gates officially opened for the five-day music festival.

This year's event will see Metallica, Kasabian and Arcade Fire headlining the world-famous musical extravaganza, with other major acts on the bill including The Black Keys, Massive Attack and Pixies.

Campers are expected to arrive throughout the day, in a bid to nab the best spot on the Somerset farm.

But it’s a case of making hay while the sun shines – because heavy showers are expected over the weekend and revellers are being advised to bring their wellies and waterproofs.

John Griffiths, a forecaster with Meteogroup, said: “If it was just a few showers the hard ground would make it drain off. But after three days’ worth of rain it will probably get quite muddy, I suspect.”

 

Car parks were opened from 9pm yesterday to allow festival-goers to arrive throughout the night when traffic volumes were low, but they were not allowed to leave their cars. The gates were being opened from 8am today ahead of the main acts beginning on Friday.

Tickets for this year's Glastonbury Festival sold out in the record time of one hour and 27 minutes. Around 120,000 went on sale, with more than one million people registering for the event, seen as the mother of all festivals.

Once all the performers, workers and volunteers are included, it brings the total number of people on site to around 175,000.

The addition of Metallica as one of this year's headliners has divided opinion, with many saying their heavy metal sound does not fit the “hippy” vibe of the festival.

But farmer Michael Eavis, who organised the first event in 1970, said he believes the American four-piece deserve their spot as no other band has ever been as “keen” to play.

Metallica are a controversial headliner at this year's Glastonbury Metallica are a controversial headliner at this year's Glastonbury

Music fans will experience improvements to this year's festival site, including a bespoke 4G network and app with features such as live streams of BBC coverage, both powered by festival technology partner EE.

The festival was granted a new 10-year licence, allowing for a capacity of up to 135,000 public tickets, by Mendip District Council in March, securing its future.

Additional reporting by Press Association

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