Glastonbury tickets sell out in record time
Monday 04 April 2005
By midday yesterday, music fans had snapped up all 115,000 tickets - at £125 apiece - for this year's Glastonbury festival, a record in the event's history. At 9am, they logged on to computers and pressed redial on phones, but the chaos of last year, when phones and website were blocked, was not repeated.
Michael Eavis, head of the festival, scheduled for 22-24 June, said: "All the tickets were sold by 12.10pm, and the website tickets went in two and a half hours. I phoned British Telecom last year and complained about the telephone exchange, and they told me the tickets should go on sale on a Sunday, when the exchange is quieter. We had 100 people in the call centre instead of 40, and with better software. Aloud.com, who were masterminding the sales, really cracked the problems.
"Last year, people stayed up all night buying tickets and were too tired to go to work in the morning." To avoid touting, all ticket-holders must provide photo identification. Mr Eavis said: "Touting has gone on for years, and I find it really offensive. People have to pay through the nose with touts, and I think this year we have knocked that on the head."
Many agreed the system had worked well. Jessica Doughty, 24, a design student at Goldsmiths College in London, said: "Last year I stayed up all night trying to get tickets; this year it was easy. It was weighted to people who have broadband."
Jimmy Chua, 24, a trainee solicitor from Bournemouth, said: "It seemed to be total chance; some people couldn't get on to the website and others were taking card details from friends because they were getting through each time."
But others were disappointed. Devika Bhat, 22, from Edgeware, said: "I'm gutted. When I got through, the operators they told me it was sold out. I begged for two extra tickets, but they had no more. I didn't get them last year either."
White Stripes, Brian Wilson and Coldplay are said to be confirmed performers. Snow Patrol, the Streets and the Killers are among those rumoured to appear. One dance tent will also be "silent" - party-goers can dance through the night with headsets there, to pacify neighbours of Pilton Farm.
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