Like other performers doing Glastonbury for the first time, we were all set for the most exciting gig of our lives. After fretting over weather forecasts for weeks, we had crammed waterproofs, boots, Divine t-shirts, chocolate, summer gear, some items of ‘festival chic’ + tent and sleeping bag into bags and backpacks we could hardly carry – and we were on our way.
Divine had been invited to be the official chocolate bar at Glastonbury – a perfect union of ethical values and delicious fun – and we – Tal Drori, Simone Lindsay, Asi Sharabi and me – were going to see how the whole thing works.
I don’t know quite what I was expecting but the sheer scale is what knocks you out first. And then there was the mud. Mud that developed from the first day, when your footsteps hardly made a mark, to the deep, sticky, sucky mud that you sink into up to the top of your boots and have to beg people to pull you out.
Over the five days we explored most of the site (you had to factor in hours to get from one part to another) – from the sea+fish theme of the Greenpeace field, to the surreal shanty town of Shangri-La. We made regular trips to Essential who were the wholesalers selling Divine on site – and to all the stores stocking Divine for the Festival.
Met up with the Oxfam team – promoting the Grow campaign and inviting passers by to ‘get their hands dirty’ with green paint, and said hello to the Fairtrade Foundation team with their stand in the Greenpeace Field.
Handed out the exclusive Glastonbury Divine bars in the Press Tent – where News of the World and Times, mingled with local SW press and journalists from all around the world – from Toronto to Buenos Aires. Met up with long time colleague Ken Gascoigne who introduced me to Billy Bragg – who has always been a great Divine supporter (Ken got a Divine Glasto t-shirt signed by Billy and by Phil Jupitus which we’ll be offering as a prize soon!). Caught up with Katy Stephens and Clive Jones
from The Guardian (who along with Orange were providing Festival necessities – mini-guides to the Festival, and tents where you could charge up your phone).
We had passes to the Hospitality Area for which we are eternally grateful – a (relative) zone of tranquility away from the heaving masses outside (with the chance of a bit of celeb spotting – Bono, Will Young, Alexa Chung, Fatboy Slim amongst others) . Arriving there early on Sunday morning after packing the car – we were surrounded by police and heard the news of a death… soon to be identified as Chris Shale…
Sunday was HOT. We were waiting for someone to call to say they had found the Golden Ticket giving them a stage-side pass on the Pyramid Stage…. but no call came. So we decided to choose someone at random… and spotted Joyce Henderson sitting with her friend Ellie Cox having a cool drink of Pimms. We must have Fairtrade radar, because Joyce turned out to be a local primary school teacher, who introduces her pupils to Fairtrade! Cue huge excitement and a flurry of phonecalls telling family, friends and anyone else they could think of – at 5.45pm we escorted them through the stage side gate – and they went off to see Plan B – right there on the stage with him.
And yes we did see some bands – including bits of Metronomy, Aloe Blacc, Elbow, Laura Marling, Coldplay, U2, Jessie J and more. Feeling pretty tired we set off before Beyonce – very sad to miss her – but the desire for a bath, loo without a layer of mud, and comfy bed was too strong…..