Ed Sheeran to headline Sunday night at Glastonbury 2017

Michael Hann
Ed Sheeran … going back to the farm. Photograph: Stefania D'Alessandro/Getty Images

Ed Sheeran is the third and final headliner at this year’s Glastonbury, where he will close the Pyramid stage on Sunday 25 June. He joins Foo Fighters, who top Saturday’s bill, and Radiohead, who headline on the Friday.

Sheeran made his Glastonbury debut in 2011, playing the Croissant Neuf stage as his first appearance at Worthy Farm. That year he also appeared as a headliner on the BBC Introducing stage. He first played the Pyramid stage in 2014, playing third on the bill on the Sunday, and this is his first appearance at the festival since then.

Sheeran’s announcement had been long rumoured, and comes as little surprise given his status as the year’s most popular artist, with each of the 16 tracks from his album ÷ featuring in this week’s UK Top 20.

Sheeran’s Glastonbury appearance comes in the midst of a massive world tour. It had been signalled by his itinerary, which sees him returning from Mexico after a gig on 14 June to apparently play just one UK show – the O2 Arena in London – on 22 June before crossing the Atlantic again to begin the US leg of his tour on 29 June. Given the expense involved in shifting a major tour around the world, and the proximity of the O2 gig to Glastonbury, it had seemed likely he would be making the trip to Somerset.

While the news will please hundreds of thousands of Sheeran fans, it will come as a disappointment to Pink Floyd devotees, whose hopes were raised in February when Roger Waters and Nick Mason said they would be up for playing Glastonbury. Although Michael Eavis, the dairy farmer behind Britain’s biggest festival, has had Pink Floyd on his wishlist for the event, the band coming back together for it had always seemed unlikely, given the strained relationship between Waters and guitarist David Gilmour.

Speaking to the Guardian recently, Sheeran said he had found his rise to international superstardom hard to cope with. “All of those things that, when you get into the industry people say: ‘Be careful of this, be careful of that,’ I was doing all of them,” he said. He began to suffer panic attacks, and to feel claustrophobic in crowds: “I just don’t like groups of people that I don’t know any more, I can’t do crowds any more. I can go to a pub, but only if it’s a pub that no one would go to. So me and Cherry [Seaborn, Sheeran’s girlfriend] go to a pub near where I live for Sunday lunch, we get a little corner table out of the way, and that’s fine. I can do that, but standing in a pub, no, I couldn’t do that. Couldn’t do it.”

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