Mud tops the festival bill as rain rules centre court

The Glastonbury Festival site has turned into a "bog of melted chocolate" awaiting the 90,000 music fans who will show up today looking for a good time.

But while mud and rain is viewed as an essential part of the Glastonbury experience, tennis fans at Wimbledon were faced with a second day of continuous rain. Play was finally abandoned without a ball being struck at 6pm and Alan Mills, the tournament referee, said he was considering another People's Sunday, when anyone could turn up and get into Wimbledon just by queueing.

By this stage in the tournament 226 matches should have been completed but by Wednesday evening only 94 matches had been played.

Meanwhile in Somerset, police advised everyone going to Glastonbury to take wellingtons and warm, waterproof clothing and to prepare for parking delays because of the mud. But outdoor clothing specialists in central London were reporting that they had sold out of wellingtons.

Tractor-loads of stones and wood chips were yesterday being brought in to cover the sludge, and gas heaters were being set up. At one point yesterday the police described conditions as "total chaos", with only one of the 14 access lanes to the site passable.

The majority of campers will arrive today, but the site had already become a quagmire yesterday, a festival spokesman said. "More and more mud just keeps oozing up out of the ground," one steward said. "You could say it looks like a bog of melted chocolate," he added.

The festival is facing its biggest wash-out since 1985 when most festival- goers gave up the battle to stay dry and learned to love the mud after it rained non-stop from Friday evening to Sunday afternoon.

Michael Eavis, owner of the farm where the festival is held, tried to put a cheery spin on the weather: "It's going to be gloomy in the skies," he said, "but very promising on the ground. It's like an outward bound course ... It's character-building for our youngsters and will make them better and stronger."

Police have closed off the eastbound carriageway of the A361 near Pilton and warned anyone not going to the festival to give the area a wide berth.

Forecasts for the weekend ahead predict more rain.

t Michael Eavis hit out yesterday at an article in this week's Big Issue magazine which describes how people without tickets managed to get through the festival's fence. "I am furious about this ... It is quite unbelievable and completely counterproductive for our cause," he said.

Adding to organisers' worries are reports that the campaign group Reclaim the Streets is planning an organised assault on the perimeter fence as a protest at the end of free festivals.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

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

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Metail Ltd: Business Development Manager for Asia Pacific

£35,000 - £40,000 based on experience : Metail Ltd: As a Business Development ...

Guru Careers: Product Manager / Product Owner

£30 - 40k (DOE) + Bonus & Benefits: Guru Careers: A Product Manager / Product ...

Recruitment Genius: Car Sales Executive - £17,000 Basic, OTE Uncapped

£17000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Company are looking for a S...

Recruitment Genius: 1st / 2nd Line Technical Analyst

£16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A 1st / 2nd Line Technical Anal...

Day In a Page

Greece says 'No': A night of huge celebrations in Athens as voters decisively back Tsipras and his anti-austerity stance in historic referendum

Greece referendum

Greeks say 'No' to austerity and plunge Europe into crisis
Ten years after the 7/7 terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?

7/7 bombings anniversary

Ten years after the terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?
Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has created

Versace haute couture review

Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has ever created
No hope and no jobs, so Gaza's young risk their lives, climb the fence and run for it

No hope and no jobs in Gaza

So the young risk their lives and run for it
Fashion apps: Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers

Fashion apps

Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers
The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Compton Cricket Club

Compton Cricket Club

Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

It helps a winner keep on winning
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate