Page last updated at 19:46 GMT, Thursday, 26 June 2008 20:46 UK

Fire causes festival travel chaos

Fire near Glastonbury site
Major roads in the area around the site have been closed

A fire near the Glastonbury Festival site has caused delays for thousands of revellers travelling to the event.

The blaze at a scrapyard about a mile from the festival in Somerset prompted the closure of the A37. Police said it would not reopen until Friday.

The sun shone for most of the day on Thursday, but rain began to fall in the evening.

Organiser Michael Eavis said his event was "within a few hundred" tickets of selling its full 137,500 allocation.

Mr Eavis also apologised for the "havoc" on the roads.

But he told those stuck in traffic earlier on Thursday: "All I can say is we've got wall-to-wall sunshine, we've got a hell of a good show for you when you do eventually arrive, and basically you will have the time of your life without any question.

"Keep your chins up, keep cheerful, and just remember there's light at the end of the rainbow and it finishes at Worthy Farm."

The main acts begin on Friday, with headlining performances from Jay-Z, Kings of Leon and The Verve.

Rumours around the site claim Jay-Z may be joined on stage by Coldplay's Chris Martin and the rapper's reported wife Beyonce.

"Jay-Z doesn't need any help," festival organiser Emily Eavis told BBC Radio 1's Jo Whiley, but added that he may be joined by "a couple of guests".


Michael Eavis pledges to carry on until he is 80

Weather forecasters have predicted a more settled outlook than last year's wash-out.

"It's not going to be as wet as past years but there will be some rain - mainly light showers on Thursday night and Saturday, although hopefully not enough to cause masses of mud and hopefully there'll be some sunshine too, especially on Sunday," said BBC Weather's Alex Deakin.

"There will be a stiff breeze but it won't blow any tents away."

In 2005, storms and flash flooding caused havoc at the Worthy Farm site, with many festival-goers having to use their tents as makeshift boats to float around waterlogged areas.

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26 Jun 08 |  Bristol/Somerset


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