10 incredible photos of Glastonbury through the years

2 April 2020, 18:05 | Updated: 2 April 2020, 18:07

With Glastonbury being cancelled because of the coronavirus outbreak, the festival has asked for fan photos from years gone by. Here are some of our favourite images from the legendary event.

The 50th anniversary of the festival was cancelled due to the coronavirus, but the call went out on social media for previous attendees of the festival to share their memories on social media using the hashtag #glastophoto and #glastonbury

"If you are a Glastonbury person please join the challenge of posting a #glastophoto. Just one picture, no description. Please copy the text in your status, post a picture and look at some great memories/pictures. #glastonbury"

We decided to pick ten of our favourite images from the archives that sum up the spirit and magic of Glastonbury.

  1. Glastonbury - the early days

    Two priests walking amonmg the crowds of festival-goers pictured from behind looking toward the Pyramid stage at the Glastonbury Festival, at Worthy Farm near Glastonbury in Somerset, England, United Kingdom, in June 1971
    Two priests walking amonmg the crowds of festival-goers pictured from behind looking toward the Pyramid stage at the Glastonbury Festival, at Worthy Farm near Glastonbury in Somerset, England, United Kingdom, in June 1971. Picture: Tony Russell/Redferns/Getty Images

    Glastonbury was first held in September 1970, the day after Jimi Hendrix died. Its roots were in the hippie and free festival, but it went on to embody the spirit of peace, unity and care for the planet. The first Pyramid Stage was literally built out of corrugated iron used for cowsheds.

  2. Glastonbury's Pyramid Stage in 1983

    A general view of crowds in front of the original Pyramid stage at Glastonbury Festival in 1983, the campsite can be seen in the foreground
    A general view of crowds in front of the original Pyramid stage at Glastonbury Festival in 1983, the campsite can be seen in the foreground. Picture: Pete Cronin/Redferns/Getty Images

    It's incredible to think that for a long time, Glastonbury lived in the shadow of other festivals like Reading. This shot from 1983 shows how small the festival used to be - you could watch the Pyramid Stage artists close up from the comfort of your own tent.

  3. Glastonbuy nightlife

    Two festival-goers in costume look on as a woman dances in the early hours of day five of Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm, Pilton on June 30, 2019
    Two festival-goers in costume look on as a woman dances in the early hours of day five of Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm, Pilton on June 30, 2019. Picture: Leon Neal/Getty Images

    Very few festivals can compete with the sheer diversity of activities that take place 24 hours a day at Glastonbury. You'll see some sights as you make your way around/

  4. Glastonbury - The Other Stage and all the other great areas

    The Other Stage in 1995, during Glastonbury's 25th anniversary
    The Other Stage in 1995, during Glastonbury's 25th anniversary. Picture: Mick Hutson/Redferns/Getty Images

    There are so many stages to take in at Glastonbury oustide of the Pyramid... The Other Stage, the John Peel Tent, The Park, West Holts, the multiple dance stages... there's so much to absorb.

  5. Glastonbury's sacred spaces

    The Stone Circle at dawn. 2009
    The Stone Circle at dawn. 2009. Picture: Matt Cardy/Getty Images

    Well into the 21st Century, the spiritual side of Glastonbury continues to have its influence. The festival apparently takes place on ancient ley lines and has its own prehistoric stone circle, whether revellers gather at all hours.

  6. Glastonbury's performance art areas

    People gather at Arcadia at Worthy Farm in Pilton during the 2014 Glastonbury Festival
    People gather at Arcadia at Worthy Farm in Pilton during the 2014 Glastonbury Festival. Picture: Matt Cardy/Getty Images

    The gian fire-breathing Arcadia spider may be gone from Glastonbury, but we will never forget the pyromaniac arachnid. Recent additions include the replica seaside pier, the Unfairground, the "drive-in" Cineramageddon and the ever popular Shangri-La and its predecessor Lost Vagueness.

  7. Glastonbury's unpredictable weather

    Glastonbury mud in 2014
    Glastonbury mud in 2014. Picture: Matt Cardy/Getty Images

    June in Britain can be a bit of a lottery when it comes to weather - and the hundreds of thousands of people can soon turn a downpoir into a swamp. But, occasionally, there will be a scorcher of a year, and a muddy Glastonbury experience is a music fan's rite of passage.

  8. Glastonbury camping

    Revellers walk through a camping area in the early hours of the second day of the annual Glastonbury festival near Glastonbury on June 27, 2009
    Revellers walk through a camping area in the early hours of the second day of the annual Glastonbury festival near Glastonbury on June 27, 2009. Picture: LEON NEAL/AFP via Getty Images

    It's not just about going to watch performances - Glastonbury is about throwing off the shackles of everyday life, getting in a tent and getting back to nature with your mates.... And it's also about stumbling through hundreds of identical looking tents at a million o'clock in the morning.

  9. Glastonbury's communal spirit

    A general view of the flags and crowd in front of the  Pyramid stage as Kanye West performs live during the second day of Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm, Pilton on June 27, 2015
    A general view of the flags and crowd in front of the Pyramid stage as Kanye West performs live during the second day of Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm, Pilton on June 27, 2015. Picture: Jim Dyson/Getty Images

    The sight of flags waving in front of a headliner on the Pyramid Stage is one of the enduring sights of modern Glastonbury festivals. Some think it's inconsiderate to other festival-goers, others think it wouldn't be the same without them. But there's no denying that people coming together to enjoy music, art, debate and more is something we should celebrate.

  10. The pure scale of Glastonbury festival

    Glastonbury festival from the air in 2004
    Glastonbury festival from the air in 2004. Picture: Mick Hutson/Redferns/Getty Images

    Glastonbury is less of a music festival and more of a mini-city that springs up for a week, complete with its own rules and regulartions, philosophy and lifestyle. Roll on 2021!