GLASTO’S ‘MAKE OR BREAK’ YEAR

After getting the go-ahead for the event, Michael Eavis insists it could be the last if there are any problems...

MICHAEL EAVIS has told NME.COM that 2002 is a “make or break year” for the GLASTONBURY FESTIVAL.

Speaking just after this year’s festival was given the green light following a marathon five-hour meeting of local Mendip District councillors last night (January 24), the Glastonbury chief admitted that if there are problems this June, the festival may never happen again.

“This is the last chance for the festival, basically,” he said. “We’ve got a tall order on our hands, but now we know we will be running the show I’m absolutely delighted and relieved.”

Until yesterday’s meeting Glastonbury 2002 had been in serious doubt. Eavis was fined £6,000 for breaching the terms of his licence in 2000, when tens of thousands of people broke through the perimeter fence. As a result of over-crowding issues, the 2001 festival was denied a licence. Around £2 million is being spent on an unprecedented upgrade in security this year.

A 3.6 metre iron fence with 16 watchtowers, floodlighting, CCTV cameras and three security companies will be used to make sure that nobody breaks into the site without a ticket.

And the capacity will be limited to a strict 140,000 – comprising 100,000 paying punters, 35,000 guests and staff and 5,000 Sunday day ticket holders.

For the first time this year, festivalgoers who arrive without a ticket will not be allowed to board the service buses or enter the car parks.

A free bus service will also be offered to ticketless punters – to ferry them away to bus and rail stations so they can head for home.

Mendip councillors also insisted that Eavis should pay a £46,974 licensing fee, and a site meeting will be held the week before the festival starts to inspect the security arrangements.

The festival, the largest outdoor music event in Europe, is worth millions to the local community.

Eavis confirmed last night that both Rod Stewart and Pink Floyd would be headlining nights at the festival. He also said that Who would not be able to play because of commitments in America.

Glastonbury 2002 will run from June 28-30.