Glastonbury cleanup crew spring into action after a sunny festival

A major clean-up operation has begun in Glastonbury to return the site of a pop-up town of 200,000 to a dairy farm in Somerset.

Volunteers began moving rubbish strewn across the 800-acre site as revelers began to return home after headline performances by Billie Eilish, Sir Paul McCartney and Kendrick Lamar.

They began collecting thousands of discarded items including paper cups and food containers after around 200,000 people descended on Worthy Farm for the festival.

The cleanup crew tackled overflowing bins of trash and large items such as camping chairs, air mattresses, slippers, flip flops and shopping bags that needed to be thrown away.

Volunteer Sean Kelly, 32, told the PA news agency: “I picked up rubbish every day for hours. In the whole recycling team, we are 2,500 and I did it for 10 years in a row.

“It’s very similar to 2019 because it’s dry, it’s much easier to pick when it’s dry.

“As a rule, everything is pretty much done at the beginning of this year. There’s been a huge reduction in gas cartridges this year, but there have been a lot of vape bars and those are the only things you can’t recycle.

“Most things are recycled here.”

Campers packed their things and set off in a steady stream from the Somerset site on Monday morning as rain fell following a festival that defied worrying thunderstorm forecasts and a yellow weather warning from the Met Office.

Highlights of the festival’s special 50th year include historic headlines from Sir Paul McCartney and Billie Eilish, as well as Lamar’s dramatic stand for women’s rights.

Meanwhile, Diana Ross reeled off hit after hit as she took the stage for the Sunday Tea Time Legends slot.

The soul singer treated the crowd to a selection of classics including I’m Coming Out, Baby Love, You Can’t Hurry Love, Stop! In The Name Of Love and at the end of Chain Reaction, pink confetti was thrown from the stage.

Kendrick Lamar performed a series of hit songs from his back catalog accompanied by intricately choreographed dancers (Yui Mok/PA)

Another standout moment was Sir Paul’s flagship show on Saturday where he wowed crowds with a jaw-dropping setlist that included surprise appearances from Bruce Springsteen and Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl.

By heading to the Pyramid Stage, the former Beatle became the festival’s oldest solo headliner, a week after celebrating his 80th birthday.

During his over two hour set he played a range of classic songs including Hey Jude, Blackbird, Live And Let Die, Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da and Get Back.

Glastonbury Festival 2022

Dave Grohl joined Sir Paul in his first appearance on stage since the death of Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins (MJ Kim/2022 MPL Communications/PA)

The electrifying spectacle was further amplified when he featured Grohl on stage to sing I Saw Her Standing There and Band On The Run, marking Grohl’s first public performance since the death of fellow Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins.

Springsteen then joined Sir Paul for Glory Days and I Wanna Be Your Man.

As part of the encore, thanks to special technology that could isolate John Lennon’s vocals from old recordings, Sir Paul was able to duet the Beatles’ track I’ve Got A Feeling alongside his former bandmate on stage Pyramid.

American singer Eilish headlined the Pyramid Stage on Friday, becoming Glastonbury’s youngest solo headliner.

Glastonbury Festival 2022

Rubbish left by festival goers waiting to be cleaned up at Worthy Farm in Somerset (Ben Birchall/PA)

The festival featured countless other memorable moments, including Greta Thunberg delivering an impassioned speech from the Pyramid Stage calling on society to shoulder its “historic responsibility to turn the tide” in the face of the global climate crisis.

It also hosted an array of Ukrainian representatives, with the country’s President Volodymyr Zelensky delivering a poignant speech via video message and the Kalush Orchestra playing their first performance in the UK since their Eurovision 2022 triumph.

Traveling to the festival, many artists and festival-goers had to contend with travel chaos as major rail strikes took place during the event and many flights were delayed or cancelled.

However, these problems did not dampen everyone’s spirits, nor did the infamous Glastonbury showers, as the weather remained relatively dry compared to previous years.