Thousands queue for first day of Glastonbury after rail strike chaos forced them to camp overnight


The long and winding road! Thousands queue from dawn for first day of Glastonbury after rail strike chaos forced them to camp overnight after hellish journey by bus or car to reach festival headlined by Sir Paul McCartney

  • Thousands of festivalgoers arrive at Worthy Farm this morning for official start of Glastonbury Festival 2022 
  • Organisers told fans they could begin parking at the site from 4pm on Tuesday amid the ongoing rail strikes
  • The festival’s main stage will not open until Friday, with headliner Billie Eilish set for Pyramid Stage on Friday
  • Founder of the Somerset festival Michael Eavis was pictured opening the gate to Glastonbury this morning 

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Thousands of eager music fans have queued in traffic since dawn for the first day of Glastonbury after the chaotic rail strike forced many to camp overnight at the four-day Somerset festival.

Organisers told fans they could begin parking at the site from 4pm on Tuesday after trains and Tube services were disrupted for a second day running – forcing revellers to get to Worthy Farm early to beat the rush. 

The festival’s main stage will not open until Friday, with headliner Billie Eilish set for the iconic Pyramid Stage followed by Sir Paul McCartney on Saturday and rapper Kendrick Lamar bringing the event to a close on Sunday.

However, DJs and live music is planned from today for eager fans who have arrived at the site early – as more than 200,000 people are expected to descend at Glastonbury over the next two days.

The founder of the Somerset festival Michael Eavis was pictured opening the gate to Glastonbury this morning marking the official start of the four-day music spectacular.

Huge crowds of revellers were pictured sitting on camping chairs by metal railings as they secured their spot in line to the entrance of the festival.

Armed with camping gear and cool boxes, excited fans waited patiently as they queued to get in to the UK’s most-anticipated music event of the year as they were met with glorious 19C (66F) sunshine – a pleasant change from the usual rain that marks the start of the muddy festival. 

Thousands of eager festivalgoers arrive at Worthy Farm this morning for the official start of Glastonbury Festival 2022

Thousands of eager festivalgoers arrive at Worthy Farm this morning for the official start of Glastonbury Festival 2022

Armed with camping gear and cool boxes, excited fans waited patiently as they queued to get in to the UK's most-anticipated music event of the year

Armed with camping gear and cool boxes, excited fans waited patiently as they queued to get in to the UK’s most-anticipated music event of the year

Motorists were pictured arriving early at the music extravaganza to beat the rush today amid ongoing rail strikes

Motorists were pictured arriving early at the music extravaganza to beat the rush today amid ongoing rail strikes  

Festivalgoers arrived at the site carrying their camping supplies and coolboxes filled with their favourite beverages

Festivalgoers arrived at the site carrying their camping supplies and coolboxes filled with their favourite beverages 

Revellers were met with glorious 19C (66F) sunshine - a pleasant change from the usual rain that marks the start of the muddy festival

Revellers were met with glorious 19C (66F) sunshine – a pleasant change from the usual rain that marks the start of the muddy festival

The founder of the Somerset festival Michael Eavis was pictured opening the gate to Glastonbury this morning marking the official start of the four-day music spectacular

The founder of the Somerset festival Michael Eavis was pictured opening the gate to Glastonbury this morning marking the official start of the four-day music spectacular

A woman with pink hair extensions and matching hued sunglasses was pictured queuing for entry on the first day of the Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm in Somerset today

A woman with pink hair extensions and matching hued sunglasses was pictured queuing for entry on the first day of the Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm in Somerset today 

Glastonbury festival today

Glastonbury festival today

The Glastonbury gates officially opened this morning for excited music fans who have been queuing since Tuesday amid the ongoing rail strikes

Huge crowds of revellers were pictured sitting on camping chairs by metal railings as they secured their spot in line to the entrance of the festival

Huge crowds of revellers were pictured sitting on camping chairs by metal railings as they secured their spot in line to the entrance of the festival

A 'beer drive thru' sign to mark the start of the festival was put up for Brits who are lined up in traffic

A ‘beer drive thru’ sign to mark the start of the festival was put up for Brits who are lined up in traffic

Despite, Glastonbury usually opening its parking facilities at 9pm the night before the first day of the music extravaganza, bosses allowed the car parks to open yesterday afternoon – but this morning roads to the site were gridlocked with traffic.

Organisers said: ‘There will be no entertainment or facilities other than toilets in the car parks and festivalgoers will be expected to remain in their cars until the festival gates open.’

Great Western Railway is hoping to maintain trains to Castle Cary – the nearest station – but has advised passengers to check for amendments before travelling.

A GWR spokesman said: ‘All we are expecting are festival workers, the site doesn’t open to the general public until Wednesday.

‘It was busy on Monday but most of the people who arrived were scheduled to get here early. Since then the numbers have been minimal compared to what we would see on a normal festival travel day.’

Pictured: People queue for entry on the first day of the Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm in Somerset

Pictured: People queue for entry on the first day of the Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm in Somerset

This year's much-anticipated festival, running from Wednesday to Sunday, will host huge stars from Diana Ross and Sir Paul McCartney, to Billie Eilish, Kendrick Lamar and Olivia Rodrigo

This year’s much-anticipated festival, running from Wednesday to Sunday, will host huge stars from Diana Ross and Sir Paul McCartney, to Billie Eilish, Kendrick Lamar and Olivia Rodrigo

Dressed in shorts and wearing sunglasses and hats, music fans waited in line as they queued in glorious sunshine

Dressed in shorts and wearing sunglasses and hats, music fans waited in line as they queued in glorious sunshine 

Traffic builds up around the site ahead of the Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm in Somerset today

Traffic builds up around the site ahead of the Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm in Somerset today

Thousands of revellers queued on Wednesday as they waited for the gates to open for the much-anticipated festival

Thousands of revellers queued on Wednesday as they waited for the gates to open for the much-anticipated festival

Traffic jams builds up around the famous Somerset site ahead of the Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm in Somerset.

Traffic jams builds up around the famous Somerset site ahead of the Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm in Somerset.

Patient drivers were also seen patiently waiting in heavy traffic heading towards the Festival yesterday.

A fleet of 52-seater coaches was lined up to take the workers to the festival site two miles away.

But one coach departed with just a single passenger, due to work at one of the charity tents at Britain’s biggest music festival.

George Smith, 53, from London said: ‘I thought I’d do the sensible thing and travel a day early to avoid the strike.

‘So I came up on Monday on the train and stayed overnight in the Premier Inn at Glastonbury which cost me £100.

‘I’d also booked a coach ticket from London for £13 as insurance in case I couldn’t get a train.

‘But it all worked well, I’m due on site at midday and there’s a coach just for me to get there.’

The 200 who got off the GWR train were working at a variety of tents, events and stalls at the festival which will attract more than 200,000 people.

Software engineer Andrew MacKay, 38, one of the early birds, took a day off work to avoid any hold-ups due to the rail strike which will hit travellers again on Thursday.

He said: ‘I knew there was limited public transport today so I came up yesterday and stayed in a delightful hotel in Castle Cary.

‘I’m working on site so I can get in from 4pm today. There may be traffic jams later but I’ll be safely there by then.’

Greenpeace volunteer Aisha Fairrie also left London a day early but stayed overnight with her parents who live 40 minutes from the festival site.

She paid £36 to get a taxi to Castle Cary and was one of the first to hop onto a shuttle bus to the site.

Marketing agency worker Aisha, 30, said: ‘I thought it would be a bit of a nightmare because of the rail strike so I left a day early.

‘I’m due on site at 4pm so I got here in plenty of time.’

This year’s much-anticipated festival, running from Wednesday to Sunday, will host huge stars from Diana Ross and Sir Paul McCartney, to Billie Eilish, Kendrick Lamar and Olivia Rodrigo. 

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