Emily Eavis said Glastonbury is in “technicolour” this year with everyone “appreciating everything so much more” following the coronavirus pandemic.
The festival returns this week for the first time in three years, finally celebrating its 50th year after the pandemic forced organisers to cancel twice.
On the eve of #Glastonbury2022, I am thrilled to bring you an episode with @emilyeavis, co-organiser of @glastonbury. We talked about her family and childhood on Worthy Farm, the death of her mum and taking the helm of responsibility for the festival. https://t.co/NmOMwHcNiJ pic.twitter.com/mhmtqfcWPW
— Annie Mac (@anniemacmanus) June 20, 2022
Co-organiser Emily, whose father Michael co-founded the festival in September 1970, told Annie Macmanus on her Changes podcast: “So much is coming back to us, it’s kind of like experiencing it for the first time in many ways.
“It’s just been such a crazy couple of years, for a while we were like maybe it won’t even run this year so it’s amazing to be back.
“It’s like it is in technicolour because everybody is just appreciating everything so much, across the site there is such a buzz, it’s brilliant.”
Emily, whose influence on the festival both musically and politically has grown steadily since 1999, said the first cancellation in 2020 was the most “stressful part” because “everything was in place”.
She said: “I had to literally call a meeting and tell everybody to go home and it was probably one of the most upsetting, difficult conversations I’ve ever had to have with the whole team, it was very, very emotional, really hard.
“It has given us time to think about the festival in a different way and it has made us appreciate it.
“I think when you’re rolling this thing out and you’re in patterns of seasons and festival movements all year, you never take a moment to take a look at it.
“I guess in a way Covid gave us a chance to look at it and think, ‘Wow it is actually a really special thing’.”
Emily said that she has been “completely absorbed in the production and building” of the event.
“We’re fitting a city into a countryside valley which is very remote and very beautiful.
“The build is all encompassing but it is also life-affirming as well, the digger drivers, trucks everything arriving, all the people, the faces.
“It’s been so long so this year I am going to sit on a hill, watch it and really take it in, it’ll charge me up.
“The Sunday night I have a real moment of reflection, realisation and feel grateful to be apart of this insane thing, you couldn’t make it now,” she added.
Festival-goers will face difficulties arriving at the site in Pilton amid three days of major rail strikes causing travel chaos.
Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) at Network Rail and 13 train operators will walk out on June 21, 23 and 25 in the biggest outbreak of such industrial action in a generation.
Jamie Njoku-Goodwin, the chief executive of UK Music, said: “These strikes risk misery for hundreds of thousands of music fans across the country who have been desperate to get back to festivals after two years of lockdowns.
“They also come at a crucial time for the live music industry and music businesses, which are just getting back on their feet post-pandemic.
“Thousands of music fans will face a huge struggle to get to Glastonbury because of the disruption, which will add to road traffic at a time when we’re working hard to improve sustainability in the music industry.
“It’s vital that all sides get around the table to bring these strikes to an end to deliver a much-needed financial boost to the music industry and a summer of fun for millions of music fans.”
Revellers can expect to be greeted with warm weather on Wednesday and Thursday before temperatures fall over the weekend with some showers expected.
The Glastonbury line-up includes new acts such as Arlo Parks, Doja Cat, Easy Life, Fontaines DC and Griff alongside more established names including Crowded House, Primal Scream and Supergrass.
Pet Shop Boys will be headlining The Other Stage – the festival’s second largest stage – in a “long-awaited” performance.
Former Led Zeppelin frontman Robert Plant will appear alongside American country and bluegrass star Alison Krauss following the release of their second collaborative album.
There will also be experimental pop music from Charli XCX and Caroline Polachek.
Three Ukrainian acts, including 2016 Eurovision winner Jamala, will bring an anti-war message to the site and there will be talks about climate change, Black Lives Matter and Russia.
Glastonbury 2022 takes place from June 22 to June 26 and tickets are sold out.