Well, these past few days marked 50 years of the iconic Glastonbury Festival and wow, it was pretty emotional! Due to Covid it was #glastoathome #glasthomebury and a variety of other names for everyone's home celebrations and although crowds couldn’t make the (almost) annual pilgrimage to Worthy Farm, it didn’t stop the community from being together virtually – online, on social channels, watching the amazing coverage on the BBC and sharing our best bits!
We had our ‘glasto in the garden’ too and although it wasn’t quite what we planned (our old tent finally went to the field of tents in the sky ;) and our new one was a wrong 'un so had to go back!) we danced, tentless, in the wind and the rain, fired bubbles at each other and there was lots of laughter... so I’ll take that!
We didn’t recreate the Pyramid Stage, but there were some cracking attempts by people far more handy than us! Shout out to Martin Curtis, Lizzie and Henry Coldstream, who made these beauts.
The best bit for me though was hearing all your Glasto memories shared on my two radio shows... Somerset cool (June 21st) and The Good Stuff (26th June). If you want to catch up, you can listen to them by clicking the links. From musicians like Matt Owens (who played a memorable set on The Other Stage with Noah and the Whale in 2013, amongst many other appearances), to veteran Glasto goers like Sheppy and Sharpe of Pilton sharing the moments that make it special for them, it really brought the magic of the festival to life. It was wonderful hearing about Mark Pickthall’s photography in the Field of Avalon, capturing the performances and spirit there every year.
I loved hearing from Jen McClean too, about the behind the scenes set up. That made me realise more than ever, just how much work goes in to creating this unique playground, including the graft and creativity from indie businesses who are at the heart of it. Chatting to Festival Postcards about their Glastonbury history brought that ‘home’ – with Hester saying she feels Glasto is exactly that.
And if you haven’t listened to the radio shows yet, you need to hear the festival story from Laura at Glastonbury-based Go La La Cards. Let’s just say, tent pegs will never be the same again! ;)
We also heard from Louise Medd – who was at the very first festival back in 1970, when she didn’t realise she was witnessing a piece of history. For Louise, Glasto has a very special place in her heart as it was a favourite of her son James, who sadly passed away when he was 35. Sharing Louise’s memories of the festivals the family enjoyed was an absolute privilege.
Glasto means many different things to many different people, but one thing remains true. It uplifts you, raises the spirits and as Somerset singer songwriter Alex Lipinski perfectly put it, “for those 5 days it’s the greatest place on earth”.
Opening photo: Jen McClean