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Tuesday, 25 June, 2002, 11:34 GMT 12:34 UK
Glastonbury shuns 'unsafe' bands
Crowd-surfer at Reading Festival 2001
Organisers want to avoid crowd-surfing

Organisers of this year's Glastonbury Festival have avoided booking heavy rock bands for fear that they could put crowd safety at risk.

The festival will be a "calmer" event after the deaths of nine fans at Roskilde, in Denmark in 2000, made organiser Michael Eavis look more closely at security.


I do really believe that this event will not be the last one

Michael Eavis
He has avoided more raucous rock groups like Green Day, The Offspring and Slipknot, whose fans jump around violently in so-called "mosh-pits" and go "crowd-surfing" over the heads of the audience.

But he did approach Oasis and Radiohead, both of whom turned him down and the festival will now be headlined by Coldplay and Rod Stewart.

"We've avoided that heavy American rock like Offspring because you get crowd-surfing, and all those things that seem to cause problems," Mr Eavis told BBC News Online.

"After Roskilde, I'm a bit worried about people bouncing about on top of each other and things. So there's a calmer feel to it."

Oasis in concert
Oasis turned down the festival's headlining slot
Mr Eavis said the much-publicised 1m "super-fence" was ready to keep any gatecrashers out - but some might still find ways to get in.

"There might be a couple of dozen, but I very, very much doubt it," he said.

The festival would probably be killed off if 10,000 ticketless fans got in, he said. At the last event, in 2000, police estimated that up to 100,000 gatecrashers got into the site.

"I do really believe that this event will not be the last one," Mr Eavis said.

He also said he had approached Oasis to headline the three-day event, which opens its gates on Wednesday, 26 June.

The band have a new album released on the day after the festival finishes. But they decided to stage their own huge outdoor concerts rather than play the festival, he said.

Radiohead had also been pencilled in to headline while he was at the early stage of planning the festival, he said.

'Best spot'

"They were going to do it early on, but then they decided they weren't ready, or it wasn't the right time for them or something."

He described their 1997 headline show as the festival's "all-time best spot".

There will also be a few "big surprise" bands to be announced, he said.

Meanwhile, two fans will be going for more than the music and taking advantage of the festival's loving spirit when they get married on site on the final day.

They will be blessed by one of the pastors at the Elemental tent, run by a group of Christian experimentalists.

Another couple will begin their honeymoon when they arrive that the festival by helicopter after getting married the day before.



Festival focus

The band's diary

Send us your views

ALSO FROM THE BBC

The history of Glastonbury

Glastonbury history


See also:

25 Apr 02 | Entertainment
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