Glastonbury Festival through the years – in pictures

Glastonbury is celebrating its 50th birthday, as it returns to Worthy Farm for the first time since 2019

Roisin O'Connor
Friday 24 June 2022 13:57
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Festival-goers begin to arrive at the Glastonbury Festival

As thousands revellers pour through the gates of Worthy Farm for Glastonbury 2022, celebrations are underway for the festival’s belated 50th anniversary celebrations.

Glastonbury turned 50 in 2020, having begun as the Pilton Pop, Folk and Blues Festival in September 1970 with 1,500 people in attendance. Admission cost £1, which included free camping and free milk.

To mark the occasion, Francis Whatley, the producer and director of the David Bowie Five Years trilogy, is re-sharing his social and musical history, The World’s Greatest Music Festival.

The story of Glastonbury is told through the festival’s principal curators, Michael and Emily Eavis, and some of the thousands of musicians who have performed at Worthy Farm over the years, including Radiohead’s Thom Yorke and Ed O’Brien, Dua Lipa, Fatboy Slim, Noel Gallagher, Coldplay’s Chris Martin, and Stormzy.

The documentary will be available on BBC iPlayer for 30 days from Sunday 19 June.

Take a look at some defining images of Glastonbury from over the years. Make sure you also follow The Independent’s live coverage of this year’s event.

A group eating apples next to a smouldering wooden cart at the first Glastonbury Festival, 1970

June 1971: Hippies at the second Glastonbury Festival, which saw the first use of a pyramid stage

21st June 1971: Festival-goers washing and collecting water at one of the stand pipes at Glastonbury Festival

June 1971: Hippies at the second Glastonbury Festival celebrate the summer solstice with music and dancing

Two Glastonbury festival-goers in 1971

A punk relaxes in 1983

Crowds in front of the original Pyramid Stage in 1983

Telephones at Glastonbury in 1985

Aerial view of Glastonbury in 1995

Keith Flynn of the band ‘Prodigy’ performing in 1997

Music fans make the best of muddy conditions as they display a wish you were here banner in 1997

Radiohead’s Thom Yorke performing in 1997

Two festival-goers enjoy a pizza in 1998

Norman Cook aka Fatboy Slim laughs at his fiance, radio and television presenter Zoe Ball (right), as the weather takes a turn for the worse in 1999

A naked festival goer in 1999

David Bowie performs in 2000

Paul McCartney performs on the Pyramid stage in 2004

Two festival-goers pass a roll of toilet paper between toilet cubicles in 2004

Festival-goers dance in the mud in front of the Pyramid stage in 2004

Kate Moss and Pete Doherty walk backstage in 2005

A festival-goer tries to rescue belongings washed away in 2005

Amy Winehouse performs in 2007

Jay-Z performs in 2008

Bruce Springsteen performs in 2009

Beyonce performs in 2011

A man jumps over a fire in 2013

People gather to watch the sun set in 2014

Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama (R) joins US singer-songwriter Patti Smith (L) on The Pyramid Stage in 2015

Two festival revellers roll in the mud after they took part in a tomato fight in 2016

An actor wears a heart-shaped costume in the circus area in 2016

People gather to watch the Arcadia landing show in 2017

Fireworks mark the end of the Foo Fighters performance in 2017

Ushers pose in a convertible at the Cinemageddon event in 2017

Stormzy performs in the headline slot in 2019

Climate change protesters take part in a procession in 2019

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