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First details of the Glastonbury spin-off festival emerge

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Dave Fawbert
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The madness is over for another year and, with the fields taking a well-earned break next year (that is, apparently unless one unnamed act decides to reform), it’ll be a full two years before you can experience Glastonbury again.

But for those of you who went this year, and those who’ve been in yesteryear and are keen for more Worthy Farm fun, you’ll be planning ahead already. And if you’re really planning ahead, you’ll be very interested in the first bit of news about the much talked-about Glastonbury spin-off festival, the Variety Bazaar.

It’s being run by the same duo – Michael Eavis and daughter Emily – as is responsible for the main festival, and will be starting in 2021; it’s been described by 81-year-old Michael as “the last big gamble of his life”.

Emily told NME that the exact location is still undecided, saying:

“We’re looking at three different sites at the moment, I’m really excited about that. Doing something at a different space is really quite appealing and exciting. There’s something amazing about the familiarity of here [Worthy Farm]. This is our home, this is where we live, we walk around these fields pretty much every day of the year. We know each hedgerow and each tree and the limits to what you can put in each field. Whereas looking at new sites with different landscapes is quite exciting. What we can put in those spaces and having some rolling installations and stuff. We’re onto that, but that’s another thing for next year when we’ve got a bit more time.”

But, most importantly, what will it be like? Well, fans of the post-main stages, late-night areas of Glastonbury should start getting very excited.

Eavis said: “It’ll be a bit more like Shangri-La, Block9 and the GreenFields. It will be the same team of people, so everybody will have a space. It just depends on where we do it really, as to how big it is – but that’s all stuff for next year.”

Shangri-La in action at this year's Glastonbury

Glastonbury itself will return in 2019, while 2020 marks the 50th anniversary of the festival, with the Eavises saying they’ve already booked two of the headliners for it. Given that the 40th anniversary saw a host of unbilled special performances by the likes of Radiohead, Pulp and Biffy Clyro, while Michael joined Stevie Wonder to sing ‘Happy Birthday’, then we’d imagine it’s going to be a pretty special affair.

Oh, and that talk that the fallow year might be cancelled next year? It came from a Q&A at Speakers Forum on Sunday, when Michael Eavis said:

"There's one band I want to reform - if they reform I'll change my mind," he said.

He added: "It's not One Direction."

We’d have a cheeky fiver on these guys being that act...

(Images: Rex)

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Dave Fawbert

ShortList.com staff writer Dave’s primary passions are pop, prose, punning and power ballads (and alliteration). A lower division football enthusiast and long-suffering cricket fan, he is one of only 110 people followed on Twitter by Chas Hodges from Chas ‘n’ Dave. Follow Dave on Twitter like Chas: @davefawbert

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