Glastonbury Festival founder Michael Eavis knighted at Windsor Castle

Glastonbury Festival founder Michael Eavis knighted at Windsor Castle

Arise, Sir Michael of Avalon!

By GFF
Michael Eavis at Worth Farm.
Michael Eavis (2016) • Credit: Bolder

Glastonbury Festival founder Michael Eavis has been knighted by the Princess Royal for his contributions to music and charity – after previously receiving a CBE in 2007.

The 88-year-old legend – whose full name is Athelstan Joseph Michael Eavis – transformed the Somerset event into one of the most widely celebrated music festivals in the world, drawing in over 200,000 people every year as well as the biggest musical talent and celebrity as its guests.

The investiture ceremony which took place at Windsor Castle earlier today (Tuesday, 23rd April) also honours two former England cricketers, Stuart Broad and Lydia Greenway, who have been recognised by King Charles.

In the official listing, Buckingham Palace hailed Glastonbury for contributing “more than £2m to charities and good causes each festival year. As well as the endless list of causes he has supported are practical initiatives such as the provision of more than 50 social houses in Glastonbury Festival’s home village of Pilton, providing affordable accommodation to local people at government-controlled rents, and never to be sold.”

Those who follow the Glastonbury webcam on the BBC website might have noticed that this afternoon, at around 15:50pm, a new sign had been put up on the notice board down at the home of Glastonbury Festival in Worthy Farm – “Arise, Sir Michael Eavis of Avalon”, it reads.

https://twitter.com/GlastoFestFeed/status/1782789819065626631

Last December, when it was first announced that he would receive a Knighthood in the 2024 King’s New Year’s Honours, the official announcement hailed Eavis for creating “one of the greatest British artistic and philanthropic success stories of all time”, while going on to describe how “from humble beginnings on Eavis’s dairy farm in 1970, the Glastonbury Festival of Contemporary Performing Arts became the largest and most celebrated greenfield music and performing arts festival in the world”.

In an interview with the official Glastonbury website, Sir Michael said his daughter Emily had brought him the official letter about his knighthood.

“I have had a good life and managed to keep the Festival going for 53 years. It’s all gone so well in the end. It took 25 years for the public to catch on. We started with 500 people in 1970 and we’ve finished up with millions wanting to come every year now. That’s quite extraordinary isn’t it?”

When asked why he believed he had received the award, Eavis said: “I’ve done quite a lot of stuff in my life and I’ve always been fairly sure that I was doing the right thing.”

Other notable recipients in the New Year’s Honours include film director Sir Ridley Scott, who received the highest honour possible in the Knight Grand Cros, and will be upgrading his previous knighthood. At the same time, Dame Shirley Bassey becomes the 64th living member of the order of Companion of Honour – which apparently can only have 65 living members at once.

In Other News

The Glade was the fourth area to drop its line-up for Glastonbury 2024 just yesterday (22nd April), with Shangri-La before that on the 19th of April, after Field of Avalon on the 16th of April, and Acoustic Stage on the 12th of April.

With only less than 65 days to go until Glastonbury opens its gates for this summer’s event, we can continue to expect more individual areas and stages to announce their dedicated line-ups over the coming weeks before the full bill gets revealed sometime at the end of May in the buildup to this year’s Festival.

Although the full Glasto line-up doesn’t tend to get released until the end of May, this year, the first main line-up poster was announced on Thursday morning (14th March), in which it confirmed that Dua Lipa, Coldplay and SZA will be taking to the iconic Pyramid Stage to headline the event this summer on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday of the Festival, respectively.

Shania Twain was also announced as this year’s Sunday afternoon tea-time Legends slot performer, along with a spread of artists, including LCD Soundsystem, Little Simz, Burna Boy, PJ Harvey, Cyndi Lauper, Michael Kiwanuka, Janelle Monae, Olivia Dean, Paloma Faith and Keane, and many more.

That said, there are many artists who ‘self-confirm’ before the official announcements by divulging the news via interviews, social media or website listings to accompany the ever-growing Glasto rumours.

Click here to view our daily updated list of acts confirmed, rumoured and unlikely to perform at Glastonbury 2024, so far.

Glastonbury 2024 lineup poster, designed by Stanley Donwood.
Glastonbury 2024 lineup poster · design: Stanley Donwood · Credit: Glastonbury Festival

Site Changes & Updates

When revealing its lineup earlier in the month, late-night area Shangri-La also announced a brand-new venue named Arrivals. Designed by Shankho Chaudhuri, Esha Sikander & Shirin Naveed, and featuring the work of iIllustrator Osheen Siva, the new space is described as the “first dedicated South Asian space” to be created, designed, and built by an entirely South Asian team.

“The visitors to Arrivals will be transported through a portal to an alien jungle planet, immersed by an audio-visual world coded in solar punk, carnivorous plants, cyborg beasts and space pirates. The space bridges across nostalgia to futurism, a sensory feast of vivid lights and colours, remixing the worlds of pulp sci-fi classics within a newly redefined South Asian aesthetic.”

In addition to new South Asian space, Glastonbury is said to also introduce a new bar for 2024 titled ‘The Brewery‘ – As a statement published on the official Festival website reads: “Just along the boulevard from the Pyramid stage that we hope will soon become a firm festival must-visit. Take a seat & enjoy your favourite drink & music with your favourite people”.

The Festival was given both praise for a “very well-run” festival in 2023, as well as a series of recommendations for this year’s edition by council officers on how it may improve ahead of the upcoming event.

Some of the improvement recommendations include better crowd control, bars displaying relevant allergen information, better walkways and additional toilets and water refill stations at The Park and The Stone Circle areas.

Elsewhere, the Rabbit Hole at Glastonbury has announced it will not be returning to Worthy Farm for the 2024 edition of the Festival – In a post on Facebook, the Rabbit Hole organisers said: “It is with gladness in our hearts and love for all of you, that we announce that the Rabbit Hole is disappearing into the ether and will not be at Glastonbury 2024. All great things come to an end and yet the end of one thing is but the beginning of another! What dreams may come!”

Although it has yet to be announced what will be replacing the beloved venue, rumours have it that it might be something created by the same team.

The Rabbit Hole at Glastonbury 2023.
The Rabbit Hole (2023) · Credit: Andre Pattenden

Competitions & Opportunities

Although all tickets have now sold out, some other opportunities for getting to Glastonbury include working and volunteering at the Festival, as well as entering the many competitions, once these options make themselves available.

Last month (4th March), Brothers Cider was confirmed as the “Official Cider for Glastonbury 2024”, and to celebrate the announcement, they are giving away 10 pairs of General Admission tickets to this year’s sold-out event.

Along with the latest Clipper Teas contest, there are several other competitions currently running for the chance of winning tickets for Glastonbury 2024 – including opportunities from Guardian, Vodafone, Time Out, White Claw, Tony’s Chocolonely & Oxfam, Chilly’s, Co-op & Worthy Cheddar, Hunter Boots, Barbour & Oxfam, Co-op & Brooklyn Pilsner, plus many more to come.

Click here to view our daily updated list of all the competitions currently running for the chance of winning tickets to this year’s Glastonbury Festival.

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