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Last Updated: Friday, 7 January, 2005, 14:04 GMT
'Noise patrols' for Glastonbury
By Caroline Briggs
BBC News entertainment reporter

Glastonbury Festival crowd
A total of 150,000 Glastonbury tickets are likely to be sold
Noise patrols are being introduced at the Glastonbury Festival to keep sound levels low for local people.

Stewards will patrol the nearby village of Pilton to ensure overnight music and disturbance from the festival is being kept to a minimum.

The plans were unveiled at a public meeting on Thursday night, ahead of the licence hearing later this month.

They are part of an overhaul of noise control arrangements at the festival, which is scheduled for 24-26 June.

The festival will still have a strong overnight feel to it
Melvin Benn, festival director

Melvin Benn, the festival's licensee and its operational director, said six noise stewards would patrol the village.

He told the BBC News website: "In 2002 and 2003 we had no real issues with noise but in 2004 we had some issues in and around the village of Pilton.

"We dealt with it very well, but in a reactive manner.

"This year we are going to deal with it in a proactive manner and have a number of stewards in the village just walking around outside, basically listening for noise nuisance.

"They will be able to report back if they hear anything so we can address it before anyone complains."

Licence breach

The Glade Stage is to move into the new dance area as part of the noise reduction changes, but the Lost Vagueness area - which contains a ballroom dancing tent, a silver-service restaurant and a casino - is designated to stay open for 24 hours.

Mr Benn added: "The festival will still have a strong overnight feel to it."

The noise reduction measures were brought in following a meeting between Mendip District Council's licensing board and festival organisers on 6 December.

The board decided it was not in the public interest to prosecute the festival for breaching the noise conditions of the 2004 festival licence.

Mendip councillors are due to consider the application for a public entertainment licence for the 2005 festival on 17 January.

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