YOU hear about it from anyone who has been before, “there is no place like Glastonbury”. And now, after going myself for the first time, everyone is right.

The place is outrageous. But in the best way possible. Everywhere you look there something that makes you think wow.

I can honestly say that Worthy Farm in Pilton provided me with some of the happiest moments and memories ever.


Everyone will have their own but for me the highlights of this year’s festival were Elton John’s incredible set, seeing Arcadia for the first time and staying up until sunset, and Fatboy Slim’s secret set at The Levels.

Music-wise, aside from Elton, my favourites were the Foo Fighters (or should I say The Churnups), Loyle Carner and The Hives. I got quite emotional during the Foo Fighters set, the power of music, hey?

Somerset County Gazette: Elton John performs to a packed Pyramid Stage.Elton John performs to a packed Pyramid Stage. (Image: PA)

Food-wise there was ample highlights. Sam’s Pies from Devon were top notch and to anyone who had a roast dinner in a Yorkshire pudding from Yorky – how good were they?!

However, truly the biggest and best highlight for me was sharing the experience with friends old and new. Stood in the huge field at the Pyramid Stage, singing (screaming) our favourite songs, completely switched off from the real world. It was bliss.


You would be forgiven if you thought a festival on this scale would be unorganised or a challenge to navigate through.

But from my experience that couldn’t be further from the truth. Of course, there are large crowds around the Pyramid and The Other Stage, and they do take time to work through, but that is expected.

Aside from those crowds, you rarely find yourself caught up in an absurd amount of people. And even when you do, the footpaths and walkways are large and aplenty, so the crowds disperse quickly enough.

Somerset County Gazette: Volunteers and staff cleaned the site every day.Volunteers and staff cleaned the site every day. (Image: PA)

The stewards and security who manage the campsites and roads are also great additions to aiding the organisation of the festival. And the staff who keep showers and toilets as clean as possible work very hard.

There were a few hiccups with getting people out of the festival as many reported hour-long queues in the carpark and bus station, but again, it has to be expected somewhat due to the scale.

On the whole it is a well-run machine. It is incredibly impressive.

The Worthy Pledge

Every person who enters the gates at Glastonbury has to acknowledge the Worthy Pledge. For me this was unusual, having gone to many festivals before, this wasn’t something I had seen often.

And I questioned the likeliness of item number one on the pledge. I will respect the fields and the people in them.

I shouldn’t have. Especially the ‘people’ part of the pledge. Everyone I encountered or spoke to was friendly, respectful and more importantly, happy.

It was an aspect that made the whole thing even more enjoyable for me. Truly. You are a product of your environment, and positivity breeds positivity. And that can be seen across all the fields, bars and stages.

Everyone wants to have a good time and wants to see everyone else have a good time. How special is that.

Somerset County Gazette: A group of Glastonbury first-timers who loved the experience.A group of Glastonbury first-timers who loved the experience. (Image: NQ Staff)

The magic of the festival has me hooked. Glastonbury Festival 2023 will be a special place in my memories for a long time.

Thank you, to everyone, from Michael and Emily Eavis and the team of planners and organisers to the staff in all the different departments, to the musicians and artists, and of course to my fellow festivalgoers. Thank you.

Former County Gazette editor and Glastonbury Festival devotee Paul Jones has written a book charting the first 50 years of the event’s history, featuring the memories and experiences of dozens of artists who have performed at Worthy Farm.

His book, View From The Stage: 50 Years of Glastonbury by the People that Played, has been described as a “brilliant collection of beautifully-written interviews” detailing some of the festival's brightest and quirkiest moments. Interviewees include members of Oasis, Status Quo, Napalm Death and Toploader.

You can buy the book online for £6.50 (including UK P&P) HERE.