Glastonbury has always been about more than just the music, so in many ways the Left Field stage is a microcosm of the whole festival – blending politics, comedy and film with some of the best offerings from bands spanning several generations. With this in mind, VF is proud to be working so closely with the stage, having the privilege to book the Friday night bands for the second year running.
So VF’s top tip for a complete Glastonbury (if you are lucky enough to have tickets) is to make at least one visit to the Left Field stage every day. The huge variety of stuff on offer means that it will never be the same experience twice. You could find yourself rocking out with Babyshambles, chatting with Tony Benn, giggling at Mark Steel being enthralled by British Sea Power or painting your pregnant body with the Birth Day Trust.
Left Field is about blending fun with serious global issues however. For instance the Refugee Council will be taking the stage on Saturday at 19:51 (to match the year of the signing of the UN Refugee Convention) – said Maeve Sherlock, Chief Executive of the Refugee Council, “We are all fed up with the myths and lies peddled about asylum seekers and refugees, and now it’s time to fight back. We need facts and figures about asylum, not scare stories. And we couldn’t have hoped for a better place to launch our campaign than in the Left Field at Glastonbury. The spirit of the festival, plus the feistiness of the Left Field, combine to make for a brilliant weekend where people will be able to stand up and show their support for refugees. Asylum is a human right we should be proud to uphold.”
The solidarity of Glastonbury is echoed in the joint sponsorship of Left Field, which is supported by Unison, Amicus and the Co-Op and which is organised and produced by Battersea and Wandsworth TUC. As Left Field supremo Geoff Martin says, “There’s nothing else like the Left Field in the labour and trade union movement calendar and I am proud as punch to have worked alongside a fantastic team of supporters and volunteers to develop it over the past four years into what it is today.”
So whether you fancy a Cuban fiesta with rum cocktails flowing on Friday afternoon, the best of new music playing out in the evening, the spirit of Rock Against Racism being rekindled on Saturday night or the alt.country sounds of Steve Earle and our very own cultural attaché Billy Bragg followed by last year’s hit headliners Neck winding things up on Sunday, Left Field has something for you