Glasto 2005 license decision: Reaction
Ross Purdie on 18 January 2005
For all the details about last night's successful license application for Glastonbury Festival 2005 CLICK HERE.
Melvin Benn, director of festivals at Mean Fiddler, said: "I'm very pleased. It was actually a lot less complicated than it sounded. The councillors have delegated some decisions (on noise control) to the committee in order to achieve what the officers were already recommending. There were a few issues of clarity that some of the councillors didn't understand. The officers were merely trying to achieve greater clarity, and vice versa.
"The times that we put down, in terms of when certain areas should be allowed to open until, is nothing new - late-night music has been going on for ages, throughout consecutive festivals. And what we have said is actually only about 50 per cent of what actually went on beforehand, but they (the councillors) just don't believe it because it's never been written down before.
"You are never going to be able to appease everyone, especially all the residents. For whatever reason, and they are not always clear on the reason, the license will always be opposed. Clearly it's a big thing for some of them, which is slightly odd when certain people who are against it then come down to the festival themselves. It would be a shame if such a small amount of people were able to disrail the whole thing.
"I thought we would get this decision today. I think it's strong one and I'm happy with it. I am 100 per cent sure the festival will go ahead. The worst case scenario would be Lost Vagueness having to shut at 4am or something like that."
Glastonbury founder and co-organiser Michael Eavis said: "The decision is absolutely fantastic. It was a real long haul with some complications over the noise but Melvin's the chap who's pulled it all together. I don't know how I managed to do it for 20 years. You definitely can't tell jokes in there any more!
"We're going to take a year off for 2006 and then review the situation with Melvin and Mean Fiddler after that. I'm happy with what we've got at the moment and yes, I could partner with someone else, but I know Melvin and he's good to work with so I'm very pleased.
"A lot has changed for licenses and the way they are handled, especially in the last three years. The noise issue became a bit of a problem throughout the meeting because it can be heard in a few of the surrounding areas. But what we've tried to do is get it all on board and bring everything out into the open so that it's all managed properly. We want to make the culture of Glastonbury more official and control music in a beneficial way for everyone.
"Late-night music has been going on for 30 years, so all Melvin's done is try to get it all above board. It was a very honest application and it almost all got through. It's gone to delegated powers now and I'm sure it will all be fine."