Political campaigners 'under police surveillance' at Glastonbury

Plus more 2013 line-up rumours

Political campaigners 'under police surveillance' at Glastonbury

Photographer:Sara Bowrey

20 July 2012

The Guardian reported that the campaigners’ stall in the Green Fields, from which they sold "political publications and merchandise of an XLW (extreme left-wing) anti-capitalist nature" was logged in a secretive database run by the Metropolitan Police, containing information sourced from undercover officers, informants, intercepts and reports from protest demonstrations, as part of an operation that has seen spies infiltrate political groups for the last 40 years.

The address and phone number of the person who booked the stall were also recorded, with Police establishing that was Guy Taylor, an activist working for Globalise Resistance, who had set it up.

45-year-old Taylor found evidence that he had been monitored after making a request under the data protection act.

His file from the database showed that police had identified his presence at 27 demonstrations for causes such as anti-racism, opposition to the Iraq War and climate change between 2006 and 2011.

One entry records how "Globalise Resistance had a campaigns stall at the Glastonbury Festival" in 2009 and that "this stall was selling political publications and merchandise of a XLW anti-capitalist nature".

Taylor said: "I can't understand what use information about what I did at Glastonbury has for the Metropolitan police.

"If they need to know the plans and schemes of anti-capitalists, the worst place to look is Glastonbury as we were rarely in a fit state to plan the downfall of a parish council let alone the world financial system as we know it."

A Metropolitan Police spokesman said: "The Management of Police Information (MOPI) statutory code of practice provides a clear framework for the collation and retention of information for policing purposes. The National Domestic Extremism Unit (NDEU) database is maintained according to this code of practice.

"The retention and collation of intelligence reports – carried out in accordance with the appropriate statutory codes of practice – is vital enabling us to fulfil our obligations of protecting life and property, preserving order, preventing the commission of offences, and bringing offenders to justice".

As for next year’s Glastonbury, Fleetwood Mac became the latest rumoured headliner recently when they announced they’d be touring next year, while the prospective Rolling Stones return has revived the perennial rumour that they'd be topping the bill next year.

In an interview with Spotify, Emily Eavis briefly discussed the possibility, saying: “There was a lot of talk of Prince [playing the festival] last year, but I don’t know if that will ever happen, to be honest. The same with the Stones, but it’s hard for us to accommodate people that are used to doing their own thing, but, you know, that was OK for Bruce Springsteen and Paul McCartney!”

She also didn’t rule out the possibility of Adele headlining, despite the singer’s dislike of festivals - “It would be brilliant to see her go all the way to the Pyramid Stage. But who knows? It’s said she doesn’t like playing to large crowds, but if you can perform at the Grammys, she could do it” – and also revealed that she wants M.Ward and Bon Iver to play next year:  “I really love what he does and he headlined The Park, so we’ll definitely try and get a slot for them.”

Glastonbury 2013 tickets will go on sale at 9am on Sunday 7 October. As with the last few years, anyone wishing to buy a ticket for the festival will have to register in advance.

Registration is open now and free of charge, and can be done by heading to www.glastonburyregistration.co.uk and filling in your details and uploading a photo of yourself, which will be printed on the ticket. Every would-be ticketholder will need to register individually.

If you have registered to buy tickets to the Festival before, you may well still be registered, as you now only need to do it once, and you can also now edit the details of your existing registration (for example if you need to change your address) on the site.

Ticket prices will be confirmed at a later date.

Glastonbury Festival 2013 takes place on 26-30 June 2013 at Worthy Farm, Pilton, Somerset.


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