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Glastonbury and Festival Republic split

Glastonbury and Festival Republic split

Benn agreed to undertake the licensing and operational control of Glastonbury Festival in late 2001/early 2002. Since then the Festival has boasted an annual capacity of 177,500 people.

The statement from Festival Republic today read: "Time moves on and now is the time for Michael and the Glastonbury team to pick up the reins again and build for the future. This will then allow Melvin and the Festival Republic team to focus on growing new Festival Republic events and the existing FR owned festivals here in the UK as well as internationally in Ireland, Germany and Norway as well as the time required of Melvin as Chairman of Wembley Stadium."

"The separation has been mutual and cordial and Melvin will oversee the change and the selection of the new Operations Director (yet to be appointed). The Festival Republic interest in GFL 2011 (the operational company of Glastonbury Festival) will be passed on to LNG, Festival Republic's parent company, in a long term arrangement that genuinely secures the future of the Festival. (The Workers Beer Company interest in the same company remains unaffected.)"

Melvin Benn said: "From an operational point of view, myself and my team have taken the Festival as far as I can and it is time for a change I think. It has been a wonderful journey with Michael but Latitude, Berlin, Hove and Electric Picnic, none of which existed in 2002, are my priorities, alongside maintaining Leeds and Reading as the bastions of the festival calendar they are, not to mention my demands at Wembley.

"That said I am committed to ensuring as smooth a handover as possible to the new team in Pilton and enjoying Glastonbury for many years to come as a festival goer myself."

Michael Eavis said: "Melvin definitely earned his stripes running the gates for us during the Eighties. This was a difficult time dealing with the closure of Stonehenge, the Battle of the Beanfield and the travellers and my attempts to accept them here at Worthy Farm was exciting but very challenging.

"We both learnt a lot about festivals then, and Melvin and I have managed to put together what is the Glastonbury we have now.

"I'll be sorry to see him go but he has masses of responsibility with all of his shows across the world and now is a good time to part company. I've got just about the best team in the business and Emily and Nick are heading up the next generation to take on more responsibility as well.

"Looking across the farm at the moment I think we were very lucky to choose a good wet year to take out - amazing bit of luck!

"See you all next year with a very promising line-up."

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