‘Yr of the Mud’: Glastonbury’s 5 muddiest ever festivalstheinsiderinsight

Glastonbury could be generally known as one of many world’s greenest festivals, due to its setting within the picturesque Somerset countryside, however from time to time the climate turns foul and people verdant fields are churned up into brown sludge.

As many followers will attest, through the years there have been a variety of memorable events the place company spent extra time attempting to pry their wellies out of the mud than they did watching bands carry out.

Some take this as a cue to surrender and go residence, whereas others resolve to lean into it, leading to a number of the extra iconic footage of Glastonbury Pageant.

Listed below are 5 of the muddiest Glastonbury festivals in reminiscence.

1982 – Slippery in Somerset

Glastonbury tickets in 1982 price simply £8 for the 25,000 those who attended. Though, these fortunate sufficient to safe a ticket weren’t as fortunate within the climate division.

On Friday, the pageant noticed the best rainfall recorded in a single day for 45 years. The bottom then grew to become swampy and slippery, however in true Glastonbury trend, that didn’t cease the grins.

The mud taking over the fields of Worthy Farm in 1982
The mud taking up the fields of Worthy Farm in 1982 (ITV)
The mud didn’t stop people from dancing and smiling in 1982
The mud didn’t cease folks from dancing and smiling in 1982 (ITV)

1997 – ‘The yr of mud’

After over a decade of comparatively dry weekends, 1997 at Glastonbury was dubbed “the yr of the mud”.

“The downpour in the course of the previous days had turned the Arthurian verdure right into a swamp of oozing, sucking chocolate mousse,” The Impartial reported.

“This was mud as you’d all the time imagined it: platonic mud, mud you may squeeze into gooey sculptures, mud which made each clod-lifting step a trial of energy. The well-known Inexperienced Fields definitely weren’t inexperienced, they usually may barely be recognized as fields.”

Sir Michael Eavis, the pageant organiser and co-organiser, advised ITV on the time: “Persons are actually having fun with themselves – and never many individuals are leaving”.

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He added: “It’s a disgrace concerning the climate and the mud and issues however the spirit may be very excessive”.

Many of the 90,000 attendees that yr nonetheless managed to benefit from the music, which included units from The Prodigy, Radiohead and Huge Assault.

Nonetheless, The Impartial additionally reported that medical doctors attending the scene believed they’d seen extra instances of trenchfoot in two days than had been witnessed for the reason that First World Warfare.

“It’s mainly folks whose toes have been moist for 48 hours discovering their soles beginning to lacerate and blister,” stated Dr David Leeder, a volunteer within the pageant’s medical centre. “This will get contaminated and it’s not very fairly. It’s so unusual we weren’t positive the way to deal with it.”

One fan, Jim Sommerville from Edinburgh, needed to be carried into the medical centre along with his injured toes within the air: “The wellies didn’t get right here till in the present day and earlier than I solely had trainers,” he advised The Impartial.

“I’ve been dancing in a puddle for about 18 hours however I might need to cease for a bit.”

In the meantime, different followers stated they have been giving up completely: “It was unhealthy sufficient coping with simply the mud,” stated Susan Robinson from Stockport as she navigated her means up a slippery hill in the direction of the exit. “However some bastard stole my wellies from outdoors my tent final night time and I’ve given up the ghost.”

Music fans make the best of muddy conditions as they display a ‘wish you were here’ banner in 1997
Music followers make one of the best of muddy circumstances as they show a ‘want you have been right here’ banner in 1997 (PA)
Music fans enjoy the mud pools at the 1997 Glastonbury festival (Martin Bennett/PA)
Music followers benefit from the mud swimming pools on the 1997 Glastonbury pageant (Martin Bennett/PA) (PA Archive)

2005 – Lightning strikes

After the “yr of the mud”, the 2005 pageant turned out to be the yr of the flood, as Worthy Farm was hit by two months’ value of rain in just some hours. The climate gods even threw in just a few lightning strikes for dramatic impact.

This turned the muddy fields into what can solely be described as marshland, with festival-goers utilizing inflatable boats and dinghies as their main mode of transport.

A festival attendee pulling friend through the mud on an inflatable dingy in 2005
A pageant attendee pulling good friend by the mud on an inflatable dingy in 2005 (Getty Photos)
Pete Doherty of The Libertines and model Kate Moss braving the mud in 2005
Pete Doherty of The Libertines and mannequin Kate Moss braving the mud in 2005 (Getty Photos)
One unlucky festival-goer traipses through a sea of water and abandoned tents during 2005’s festival floods
One unfortunate festival-goer traipses by a sea of water and deserted tents throughout 2005’s pageant floods (Getty Photos)

2007 – The wettest Glastonbury ever

Glastonbury 2007 was formally the wettest on document, with 60.1mm of rain falling on the Friday. And it didn’t cease there; the moist climate caught round for the complete weekend.

The 135,000-person-strong crowd braved the rain and dust to observe headliners the Arctic Monkeys, The Who and The Killers. As soon as once more, Michael Eavis was impressed by how revellers managed to maintain their spirits up.

“It’s gone very effectively, despite the rain and despite the mud,” he stated. “The drains have really labored, imagine it or not. Somebody referred to as me from Spain and stated they might swap all of the solar they’d for the Glastonbury tradition.”

Two festival-goers sliding in the mud in 2007
Two festival-goers sliding within the mud in 2007 (Getty Photos)
People struggling to leave the festival due to the mud in 2007
Individuals struggling to depart the pageant because of the mud in 2007 (Getty Photos)

2016 – Mud wrestling

9 years later, pageant attendees confronted a number of the worst mud the Somerset farm had ever seen, after torrential rainfall hit the location within the weeks working as much as the pageant.

Eavis advised The Guardian that each single little bit of woodchip they may discover within the south of England was getting used on the location, and even prompt that it was worse than “the yr of mud”.

“I’ve by no means seen mud prefer it in my entire life. That is worse than 1997,” he stated. “In all 46 years, it hasn’t been as unhealthy as this.”

Two festival revellers roll in the mud in 2016
Two pageant revellers roll within the mud in 2016 (Getty Photos)
Festival-goers eating lunch in the thick mud in 2016
Pageant-goers consuming lunch within the thick mud in 2016 (Getty Photos)
The leftover wellies after an awful year of mud in 2016
The leftover wellies after an terrible yr of mud in 2016 (Getty Photos)

Glastonbury 2024 takes place from Wednesday 26 June to Sunday 30 June. This yr’s headliners are Dua Lipa, Coldplay and SZA, whereas the Legends Slot will likely be crammed by country-pop star Shania Twain.

Fingers crossed that 2024’s pageant will deliver a “Sky Filled with Stars” quite than a “Wet Day”.

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