Glasto before the glamping: Pictures look back to time before Britain’s foremost music festival went corporate with pop-up hotels, spas, beauty treatments and flushable toilets
- In 1970 tickets were sold at just £1 to 1,500 campers and headliners included Marc Bolan, Keith Christmas
- By 2022 festival-goers can fork out up to £24,999 for a stay at The Pop-Up Hotel which has a spa and helipad
- For £1,150 music fans can sleep at the festival’s campsite in an 18-foot tipi which sleeps up to six people
Yurts, spas, beauty treatments, flushable toilets and even a helipad are now par for the course when attending Glastonbury.
It’s a far cry from the muddy Worthy Farm fields of yore. Glasto veterans still revel in the memory of 2005, when the festival was hit by flash floods adn turned into an instant mudfest.
Since its debut in 1970 Glastonbury has attracted thousands of eager music fans to support their favourite artists come rain or shine.
But the legendary festival has changed a lot over the last 50 years. From tickets sold at just £1 for only 1,500 campers at the Somerset festival’s first year to the dizzying heights it has reached today, Glastonbury has grown to something bigger than its creator Michael Eavis could have expected.
In 1970 the headline acts were Marc Bolan and Keith Christmas with 1,500 guests getting in for £1, a ticket which included free milk from the farm. Festival-goers would camp wherever they found a spot for their humble tents.
But by 2022 festival-goers not wishing to slum it on a campsite and risk being washed away by torrential downpours can fork out up to £24,999 for a stay at The Pop-Up Hotel which is a 10-minute walk from the site.
The hotel boasts private pools with swim-up bars and a spa with nine beauty therapists as well as some home from home comforst such as flushable toilets and hot showers.
And if guests don’t fancy grabbing a burger from a food stall they will be catered for by the chef of London’s private members club Blacks, Luke Thomas.
For those not willing to spend quite as much money on camping in style, other luxury options are available from £1,995. Guests wishing to splash their cash can purchase a stay in yurts of varying sizes which come kitted out with double beds and cosy furnishing.
And for £1,150 you can sleep at the festival’s campsite in an 18-foot tipi which sleeps up to six people. For that price the Glastonbury website states: ‘Tipi dwelling is an incredible and elemental experience, but not a luxury one, so whilst the Tipis include a waterproof groundsheet, inner lining and rain catcher, you will need to bring your own bedding, mats, and any other necessary creature comforts.’
Festival-goers caked from head to toe in mud pose for a picture at Glastonbury in 2005
Andy and Liz from Yorkshire enjoys the first day of the Glastonbury Music Festival 2005 at Worthy Farm, Pilton on June 24, 2005 in Glastonbury
A festival-goer tries to rescue belongings washed away on the first day of the Glastonbury Music Festival 2005
Scavengers in a Canadian canoe search the field of flooded tents at the very wet 2005 Glastonbury festival
Tents and festival-goers are surrounded by flood water on the first day of the Glastonbury Music Festival 2005
An aerial view of a field of tents at the Pilton festival near Glastonbury after torrential downpours flooded the site in 2005
Festival-goers avoiding the flood water move around the site on the first day of the Glastonbury Music Festival 2005
A group of festival goers lie together under blankets and sleeping bags at the first Glastonbury Festival, United Kingdom, September 1970. This year the headline acts were Marc Bolan and Keith Christmas with 1,500 guests getting in for £1, a ticket which included free milk from the farm
Hippies at the Glastonbury Fair music festival in 1971. The Festival moved to the time of the Summer Solstice and was known as the ‘Glastonbury Fair’. It was in this year that the first ‘pyramid’ stage was constructed
Three festival-goers walk around the campsite in 1971. Acts this year included Hawkwind, Traffic, Melanie, David Bowie, Fairport Convention and Quintessence. Attendance: estimated at 12,000. Price: free
Two topless women, one wearing body paint, at the Glastonbury Fair music festival in 1971. This year It had been planned by Andrew Kerr and Arabella Churchill who felt all other festivals at the time were over-commercialised
Topless hippies enjoying the sunshine at the second Glastonbury Fair in 1971. It was paid for this year by the few who supported the ideal so the entrance was free and took a medieval tradition of music, dance, poetry, theatre, lights and spontaneous entertainment
Young people keep warm in the morning mist surrounded by cars and rubbish at the first Glastonbury Festival, United Kingdom, September 1970
A view of the Glastonbury Fair music festival in 1971, which saw the first use of a pyramid stage which was constructed out of scaffolding and expanded metal covered with plastic sheeting
A man tends a campfire wearing only his underpants next to a group of tents and with a camper van and the stage visible behind him in the camping area at the first Glastonbury Festival, United Kingdom, September 1970
A general view of crowds in front of the original Pyramid stage at Glastonbury Festival in 1983. Mendip District Council issued a Public Entertainment Licence this year which set a crowd limit of 30,000. Attendance: 30,000. Tickets: £12
A wide shot of the Pyramid stage and its setting, Glastonbury Fair in 1971. Just 12,000 people attended the festival this year so there was much more room for people to roam and camp freely
Festival goers waving to camera at Glastonbury in 1990. The festival took the name of the Glastonbury Festival for Contemporary Performing Arts for the first time, to reflect the diversity of attractions within the Festival. Acts included: The Cure, Happy Mondays, Sinead O’Connor and World Party. Attendance: 70,000. Tickets: £38
A group of festival goers drinking tea beside a VW camper van at the first Glastonbury Festival in September 1970
Audience members in front of the Pyramid stage at the Glastonbury Festival in June 1983. It was also the first year that the Festival had its own radio station, Radio Avalon. Acts included: Marillion, The Beat, UB40, Curtis Mayfield
Two people sitting on shoulders above crowds at Glastonbury Festival, cheering, with flags in 1990. This was the first year that a professional car parking team was employed to encourage the best use of space. Donations of £100,000 were made to CND and other local charities.
Deacon Blue on one the main stages at the Glastonbury Festival attracting a large crowd in 1990
Two festival goers take a chance to relax at the Glastonbury Festival in June 1992. This was the first year that the donations from the profits of the Festival were made to Greenpeace and Oxfam. Acts included: Carter USM, Shakespeares Sister, Primal Scream, P J Harvey, Sawdoctors and The Levellers. Attendance:70,000. Tickets: £49
Festivalgoers dancing at Glastonbury Festival in 1984. Acts included: The Waterboys, The Smiths, Elvis Costello, Joan Baez and Ian Drury. Guest speakers included Bruce Kent, the chairman of CND and Paddy Ashdown. Attendance: 35,000. Tickets: £13