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Glastonbury Daily News: Friday

27 June 2003

This may be the first official day of the festival but thousands of festival goers have been here for several days already...

By 9 am on Thursday morning, 37 500 (8000 more than 2002) had already descended on the site to start soaking up the atmosphere and to get into that Glastonbury frame of mind.

So far crime rates seem to be low with only 17 arrests made which is an improvement on the 26 that had been made by this time last year. Security also seem confident that no one is going to get in over the fence and the only reported attack on it so far ended with the jumpers landing right in the security compound. Bet they felt a bit stupid.

The feel good story of the day is that an anonymous yet guilt ridden festival goer has furnished Michael Eavis with 250 worth of postal orders by mail in order to compensate for jumping over the fence in 1998, 1999 and 2000.

There is a new addition to Glastonbury this year and that is the memorial stone that has been placed in the Green Fields in honour of the late Joe Strummer, the legendary singer from the Clash. The stone was selected personally by Michael Eavis as was its location. The stone will remain unmarked to avoid it becoming a shrine.

Further efforts have been made to protect residents of nearby villagers this year. Following several muggings outside the festival in 2002, security has been increased in order to move on any festival goers that do not have tickets. Hopefully this will go some way to avoid the large numbers of people who simply camped outside the festival and trespassed constantly over neighbouring land and property. The final aim of the increase in security is to protect festival goers as they return to the car parks at the end of the festival as last year many people were assaulted at this point.

We also have an exlusive rumour to bring to you. We've heard that following a gig in Rome with his band The Levellers, Simon Friend has been desperate to get down here and find a stage to play on. Rumour has it that he will be arriving on Saturday and playing on the Leftfield Stage on Sunday around 12.00 pm. All you Levellers fans out there - make sure you don't miss it!

As if that weren't enough we also have reason to believe that Simon will be appearing in the Ballroom in Lost Vagueness on Saturday night (Sunday morning) at 2.30 am with none other than Mark Shaw from Then Jericho. Mark played at our pre Glastonbury warm up party this week and put in a sensational performance, so combined with Simon (who also guested at our party) and the mystical Lost Vaguness ambience, take it from us, you won't want to miss this one...

- Click here to discuss this on the Festival Forums!
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