|24-06-2007, 06:52 PM||#1|
mr coldplaying himself
Eavis praises Glastonbury spirit
Glastonbury Festival founder Michael Eavis has praised festival-goers' spirit after heavy rain blighted the three-day event.
Mr Eavis, who began the festival on his Somerset farm in 1970, said the weekend had "gone very, very well, in spite of the rain and mud".
But conditions have improved, with the sun shining for Dame Shirley Bassey's set on the main Pyramid stage.
The Who and Kaiser Chiefs are also on the bill for the festival's final day.
"It's a pity about the rain, but it seems to be a regular feature of the English summer, so the festival compensates for it," Mr Eavis told reporters.
"Someone phoned me from Spain and said they would swap all the sun for the Glastonbury culture," he said.
The 177,500 festival-goers camped out around Worthy Farm, near Pilton, woke on Sunday morning to further showers, although they were treated to sunshine in the afternoon.
Mr Eavis said he had considered moving the date of the event but found after looking at statistics that "one weekend is no better than any other".
Festival-goers had complained of poor sound from the Pyramid Stage, with The Killers' set on Saturday being punctuated by cries of "turn it up" from some.
Mr Eavis said the speaker system had been changed for this year's festival.
"I'm sorry about the PA, it's not quite strong enough for us here, so I'm slightly disappointed by that. I think we're going to have to look at that again."
A spokesman for the festival said the sound had to be turned down because it was breaking council noise limits outside the site.
Mr Eavis also conceded that there were problems with the photo ID system used for festival tickets this year.
"The printing wasn't really good enough so we have to improve that," he said.
He revealed that 2008's headliners were already confirmed, but refused to reveal who they were.
"It's not Muse or U2," he added.
Avon and Somerset Constabulary said that crime was down compared with 2005's festival, which had a smaller number of people on the site.
By Sunday morning, 236 crimes had been reported, compared with 267 in 2005.
But one man, a 26-year-old from the West Midlands, died after being found unconscious in the early hours of Saturday morning.
"It proves that Glastonbury is a safer event," Sgt Hardy Husain said.
"The organisers, the police and the local authority have worked very well together. Security has been improved everywhere across the site."
But the local council said that an over-run of Bjork's set on Friday night, breaking a 0030 curfew by 20 minutes, breached the festival's licence.
Mendip District Council's planning and environment manager Charles Uzzell said: "There could be a review of the licence, and the ultimate sanction is the removal of the licence but I don't see that as a possibility."
He added that the rest of the festival had been a "success".
Australian festival-goer Travis Banko, 26, from Melbourne said it was his first time at Glastonbury.
"It's been absolutely brilliant, it lived up to the hype. Every day has just got progressively better," he said.
"I've managed to catch a lot of bands, and I don't think any one of them has really disappointed."
Mary Laken, 50, who attended the festival with her 13-year-old daughter Lucy, said: "We are staying in the tipi field, and I'm glad we are there because the mud has been worse this year than it has ever been.
"But the tipis are pretty well sorted and people are bringing their own instruments in the evening and staying up all night."
Arctic Monkeys, Kasabian, Iggy and the Stooges, The Kooks, Paul Weller and Bjork are among the acts who have already played the festival, which closes with The Who's Pyramid Stage set on Sunday night.
The early bird catches the worm. The second mouse gets the cheese!