We all have a favourite band, and more importantly we all have that one song that resonates with whatever is going on in our life. For me it's 'Gold' by Spandau Ballet (1983). The words always fill me with a sense of pride at what I've overcome and give me the strength to carry on and be 'indestructible'.
This weekend the UK celebrates the Glastonbury Festival of Contemporary Performing Arts, with acts including the sensational Dolly Parton, The Black Keys, Lily Allen, Metallica, Blondie, Sam Smith and many, many more.
Tickets to the Glastonbury Festival have a tendency to sell out within hours of being released so I thought I'd use this post to celebrate the history of Glastonbury Festival and point you in the direction of finding your own unique song or recognising a favourite band.
History of Glastonbury Festival
It all began in 1970 and was held over 2 days at Worthy Farm in Somerset. The cost of a ticket back then was just £1 and this included free milk from the farm. 1,500 people attended and were entertained by The Kinks, Steamhammer and Duster Bennett. By 1971 attendance numbers had increased to 12,000 and the event was free. This was the year of the first Pyramid Stage, constructed on the Glastonbury-Stonehenge ley line. As the festival was moved to the Summer Solstice it became known as 'The Glastonbury Fair'.
By 1983 there was the introduction of the Local Government Act meaning Mendip District Council had to issue a Public Entertainment Licence. This set an attendance limit to 30,000 and included specific details about hygiene, water supply and road access. Ticket price in 1983 was £12.
In 1994 the famous Pyramid Stage burnt down in the early hours. A replacement was provided by a local company and the show went on. This was the year that saw the first appearance of wind turbines behind the main stage providing 150 kw of power. 80,000 people attended the 1994 festival and it was the first time it had been televised by Channel 4. Ticket cost increased to £59.
The nickname 'Year of the Mud' was bestowed upon the 1997 festival following torrential rain just before the event started, however this didn't deter the 90,000 festival-goers who boogied in their wellington boots.
Of course Glastonbury Festival isn't all about the music and wet weather. The organisers donate huge amounts of money to support good causes. In fact, in 2004 £1million was paid to Greenpeace, Water Aid, Oxfam and local good causes alongside £100,000 to the Sudan Appeal.
The 'happiest event yet' was held in 2005 with the introduction of the Dance Village. This area had 8 different venues all playing different dance music. This was also the year when 2 months worth of rain fell in several hours. With tent's floating alongside dinghy's the festival-goers spirits remained at an all time high. £1,350,000 was donated to charities in this year and tickets sold out in under 3 hours.
The 40th Anniversary of the Glastonbury Festival took place in 2010 with 135,000 party-goers paying £185 a ticket. Several of the original 1970 event performers returned, including DJ Mad Mick. 2010 also saw 80,000 festival fans watching England on a large screen, as they were beaten in the World Cup!
Last years event holds the record for the fastest ever ticket sales and record viewings on TV. With the Rolling Stones and Arctic Monkeys playing then it was no wonder they sold out so fast!
Glastonbury 2014 kicks off tomorrow (Friday 27th June) and runs through to Sunday 29th June. If you would like to follow the fun but couldn't get a ticket then you can follow them on twitter or log on to the Glastonbury Festival website.
You can also follow the festival on the BBC.
Spandau Ballet may not be playing but I'm sure I could find another song to add to my own playlist from the impressive line-up at this years event. Bring it on Dolly!
Have you been to Glastonbury Festival? Are you going this year?
Maybe, like me, you've never been but it's on your bucket list - who would you love to see live on the Pyramid Stage?
Photographs courtesy of Glastonbury Festival of Contemporary Performing Arts Website