Glastonbury organiser predicts demise of UK summer festivals

Ceri Roberts

Summer music festivals like Glastonbury, Reading and Latitude have become an important event for British music fans - but that could be about to change.

Glastonbury organiser Michael Eavis, who started Britain's biggest music festival on his Somerset farm in 1970, says that the market place is now crowded and cheaper events abroad offer the same experience for a fraction of the price.

He also blamed the economy for the decline in ticket sales and says that a lack of jobs for young people, combined with high university tuition fees, means that festival goers can no longer afford to attend these events.

He told The Times: "It's on the way out. We've probably got another three or four years.

"Womad and Latitude are not selling out. Partly it's economics, but there is a feeling that people have seen it all before."

Speaking about his own festival he said: "We only sell out because we get huge headliners. In the year Jay-Z played we nearly went bankrupt."

Tickets for this year's Glastonbury cost £200 and sold out within two hours when they went on sale last October.

However Latitude Festival, which takes place next weekend, still has almost 1,000 tickets left and it has been suggested that there are around 40 per cent of the tickets left for both the Reading and Leeds Festivals.

Next year Glastonbury Festival will take a break to allow the site a 'fallow' year. It will return in 2013.

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