Glastonbury 2003: the Organisers strike back!

Following the Mendip District Council's refusal of a public entertainment licence for the 2003 Glastonbury Festival, Michael Eavis has submitted a new license application, and is also appealing against the original decision.

The application will be sent out for consultation to the police and other relevant organisations, and a meeting will subsequently be held to decide whether or not to grant the new license. This is mooted to be in early Febuary.

The unexpected refusal of the original license application came as a great shock to the festival organisers and industry alike, as Eavis felt it was their best application yet. Following the success of the 2002 Glastonbury Festival (where crime and congestion were significantly lower than previous years), the police and council were in favour of the licence being granted (for the first time in the festival’s 32 years history!). However, councellors voted against the application by 5 votes to 4, in a 5 hour meeting held on December 12th. Yet, 6 of the committee members were absent, and Eavis belives that this dealt a serious blow to his chances.

Ironically, the strongest objections raised against the license concerned the success of the new £1.5m super-fence in keeping gatecrashers out of the festival – and roaming through the surrounding village and private farmland, posing a ‘threat’ to the environment and the security of inhabitants. In response, Eavis pledged to increase security and police presence above the recommended level suggetsed by police.

He said, of the refusal, “We are very disappointed in the outcome of the Regulatory Board Meeting. We had a robust application for the 2003 Festival which addressed the concerns of villagers and did not deserve to be turned down. We will be appealing to magistrates with all the vigour we can muster.”

Click here to see our coverage of the original Regulatory Board Meeting.

If the new license is successful, Glastonbury 2003 will take place on the 27th, 28th and 29th June, with R.E.M. already confirmed to headline the first night.