Much to our disappointment, the Glastonbury Festival has been canceled for the second year in a row.
The coronavirus pandemic ended our hopes of returning to Pilton this year, with a full festival proving impossible to hold given the uncertainty and risk of infection.
There’s a lot going on instead, from the BBC’s Glastonbury Experience to a mini-festival planned for September. But we thought we’d put all the reasons for Glastonbury’s cancellation in one place.
Why is Glastonbury cancelled?
The main reason is, of course, the coronavirus. But given that other festivals and concerts are taking place – with rapid tests or vaccine certificates often required – why couldn’t Glasto have done the same?
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Organizers Michael and Emily Eavis did not go into specifics when they announced the cancellation in January. They said: “With great regret we have to announce that this year’s Glastonbury Festival will not take place and it will be another year of forced fallow for us.
“Despite our best efforts to move heaven and earth, it has become apparent that we simply cannot make the Festival happen this year. We are so sorry to have let you down.”
What else did the Eavis family say?
Naturally, Michael and Emily Eavis focused much of their efforts on launching Live at Worthy Farm. Ahead of the livestream, Emily said: “It’s very exciting, everyone’s on deck right now to really build the show.
“I’m never happier than when I’m surrounded by high visibility, helmets and rig. We have all these amazing artists recording at different times of the week and it’s going to be something a little bit special.
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“We put so much into it, all of our creative passion and imagination and everything that we put into the festival, we put into this film.
“It’s basically a five hour movie and it goes through Worthy Farm with all these amazing artists and guests and it gives you a look at the farm in a way you’ve never seen it, but with some amazing musical moments. .I think it’s going to be a lot of fun, and probably a little emotional too.”
However, the stream – which was produced by a third-party company called Driift – was plagued with technical issues and Emily was forced to apologize to fans. “I’m so sorry for the issues with the stream tonight,” she said.
“We’ll obviously make sure to show the entire film again from tomorrow and give you the chance to catch up on any bits you missed. I really hope you can enjoy the rest tonight. And again once, I’m so sorry to everyone who’s had trouble.”
Highlights from Live at Worthy Farm are due to air on the BBC later this month.
What about this “mini-festival”?
In February, Michael Eavis teased fans, saying, “I would like to do something in September.
“I’d like to do something smaller somewhere around the anniversary date of our debut, which was September 18, 1970. I’d like to consider doing something around that time.”
Emily added fuel to the fire, saying: “We would definitely like to do something around this time in 2021 if we are able and if it’s allowed.”
Since then, organizers have had a formal request approved by the local council for a two-day, one-stop event. It will be held on September 17 and 18, but further details are yet to come.