You can go your own way: Eavis splits with manager


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The Independent Online

Wanted: a manager to run Britain's biggest music festival. Must have Jay-Z on speed-dial and be willing to get their Wellies dirty.

Glastonbury is about to enter a new era after Michael Eavis parted company with the festival promotion company that helped ensure the event's long-term future.

The 10-year relationship between Melvin Benn, the licence holder at Glastonbury through his Festival Republic company, and the Eavis family has come to an end, both parties announced in a statement.

Mr Eavis, the dairy farmer who owns the Somerset site, brought in Mr Benn in 2002 to help manage the festival, which was struggling to keep out gatecrashers as its popularity soared. Mr Benn's company, then called Mean Fiddler, took a 20 per cent stake in Glastonbury and brought a new professionalism to the operation, improving security and helping gain a series of licence renewals, which have secured the festival's future until 2017.

The capacity was increased to 177,500, with superstar headliners including Jay-Z, Bruce Springsteen and U2 playing at the event. The first festival was held in 1970 with a line-up that included Marc Bolan.

Mr Benn and Mr Eavis have now agreed "the time is right for both parties to go their separate ways".

Mr Eavis said: "I'll be sorry to see him go but he has masses of responsibility with all of his shows across the world and now is a good time to part company."

Registration is already open for ticket applications for next June's Glastonbury festival, after a "year off" this year. Michael Eavis says a "very promising line-up" has been booked for 2013.