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Crowd control issues


dulcificum
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1 hour ago, Madyaker said:

Yeah it was a mess at times. The crush at Arcadia / Park was proper dangerous. But the festival decided to sell more tickets in a year when they should have known they would have trouble getting the same number of security staff and stewards, so it's on them. They really need to stop selling as many tickets and go back to the way it was in 16 and 17 with 135k or whatever it was. No need for it.

I was going type pretty much this. I'd rather pay more for a ticket than them make more money through volume of sales.

Edited by Greased-Up Deaf Guy
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1 hour ago, Madyaker said:

Yeah it was a mess at times. The crush at Arcadia / Park was proper dangerous. But the festival decided to sell more tickets in a year when they should have known they would have trouble getting the same number of security staff and stewards, so it's on them. They really need to stop selling as many tickets and go back to the way it was in 16 and 17 with 135k or whatever it was. No need for it.

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3 hours ago, LoraMaze said:

There were definitely none with any balls this year, and I think a higher percentage of punters didn’t give a fuck. And just generally more punters too

I definitely noticed an increase in entitled behaviour over my 3 shifts on the gate. Unlucky for them that no fucks were given

Edited by March Hare
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1 hour ago, Madyaker said:

Yeah it was a mess at times. The crush at Arcadia / Park was proper dangerous. But the festival decided to sell more tickets in a year when they should have known they would have trouble getting the same number of security staff and stewards, so it's on them. They really need to stop selling as many tickets and go back to the way it was in 16 and 17 with 135k or whatever it was. No need for it.

Couldn't agree more. I got a ticket in the resale this year, reduced capacity might mean I didn't get one. I'd honestly take that (as well as a higher price) if it leads to a more enjoyable experience when I'm there. Reduce it to the levels of 2016 and it's a much better festival as a result...

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7 minutes ago, Greased-Up Deaf Guy said:

I was going type pretty much this. I'd rather pay more for a ticket than them make more money through volume of sales.

Yeah id be ok with that. Or else don't give so much money to Oxfam, WaterAid and Greenpeace if they are worried about the festivals financial stability. THose oragisations getting less money from glasto is better than them getting no money from glasto because it isn't can't continue.

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2 minutes ago, Madyaker said:

Yeah id be ok with that. Or else don't give so much money to Oxfam, WaterAid and Greenpeace if they are worried about the festivals financial stability. THose oragisations getting less money from glasto is better than them getting no money from glasto because it isn't can't continue.

Greenpeace must rake it in during the festival anyway, I’d happily pay £300 for it to be less busy. 2017 was perfect 

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27 minutes ago, maelzoid said:

Maybe moving Arcadia to Silver Hayes?

SH was such a ghost town this year every time I went through it. Never saw it really buzzing at any point. I think the whole area needs an upgrade to make it a true alternative to the SE corner.

It was absolutely rammed from after the headliners through to about 1am on the Sunday. Pretty busy on the Thursday as well. But yes, I feel like one massive stage like arcadia which starts after the headliners finish would be a good idea though. Then you could use the arcadia space to have a couple of SE corner stages or something. 

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3 minutes ago, Madyaker said:

Yeah id be ok with that. Or else don't give so much money to Oxfam, WaterAid and Greenpeace if they are worried about the festivals financial stability. THose oragisations getting less money from glasto is better than them getting no money from glasto because it isn't can't continue.

 

Just now, LoraMaze said:

Greenpeace must rake it in during the festival anyway, I’d happily pay £300 for it to be less busy. 2017 was perfect 

Ditch Greenpeace. No loss imo. From what I can tell they don’t do much like the others ie steward like Oxfam or staff the water points like Wateraid. 

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16 minutes ago, Badlands said:

Pricing out people less well off so you don’t have to queue as long for a piss is such an utter shit take.

It's not about queues it's about dangerous crowd control issues. Lots of volunteering options for people who can't afford a ticket. But nice of you to have a go all the same.

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7000 people may not be a huge number in terms of the overall capacity, but it is a huge number if they all turn up to one stage!

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Do we know what has changed in terms of numbers in attendance?

Was it 135,000 ticketed from 2007-2019 and now 142,000? Plus 50,000 staff?

Worthy View has 10,000 right, and Sticklinch 5,000, so may explain why camp sites didn't feel busier but everywhere else did.

Edited by ProperTea
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2 minutes ago, Madyaker said:

It's not about queues it's about dangerous crowd control issues. Lots of volunteering options for people who can't afford a ticket. But nice of you to have a go all the same.

Not sure ‘making them work at the festival for a ticket’ is much better to be frank.

Dangerous crowd control is due to lack of proper organisation, not because it was too busy. Every year we get packed pinch points after big acts, mad busy times when a larger act is on a small stage and complaints the festival needs to change. Same as it ever was. 

 

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3 hours ago, Sku said:

I think the problem is, that the back has actually become the most popular place to watch from. It's convenient for the bars, the toilet, for food. It allows you to arrive at the last minute. It allows you to rush off to the next thing without getting stuck. You can set up a chair or picnic blanket if so inclined.

I was at the back for busy sets including Macca, Diana Ross and PSB and that's not what happened where I was - those who arrived later wanted to get further in to where they could get more atmosphere and so they kept flowing past and forwards - indeed those who had chairs sometimes needed to fold them to let them through. 

 

1 hour ago, neilbolton said:

At that point, my partner and I simply cut our losses - we'd exhausted our will to bear the crowds, and despite wanting to see PSB, we decided to leave the site and come home. We're so glad we did now, hearing that it was again a nightmare leaving the other stage. 

I went to PSB and found a spot which wasn't too busy and got in and out without issues - to be honest once I found a decent spot at a particular stage that's where I went next time. 

1 hour ago, deletebeep said:

The queus at food outlets, ridiculously small portions (5 halloumi fries for £7!!!!???) and cost meant that I spent 90% of the festival starving. Debated on going home on Friday morning as I was fed up with it and the crowds were making me anxious. It was basically impossible to get a reasonably priced filling meal. I ended up spending £10 in co op and eating it all in one go, and I'm a skinny bloke.

There were numerous stalls doing "food for a fiver" at the festival's request - often a slightly smaller portion or cheaper dish, but I specifically avoided food queues and ate several things which were cheaper - plus there's co op, the bakery etc. There are always threads here each year about it as others have the same concern about money. 

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Bit concerned about the prevalence of people saying they're OK with the festival putting the ticket price up to control numbers -

A) if GFL wanted to do that they could have many moons ago

B) I thought most of us wanted to ensure as broad a demographic as possible could attend?   (I don't want it to be full of entitled gits like me) 

Also suggesting Michael should ditch one of his charities?  Seemed pretty clear in the 50th documentary that a significant part of the justification to himself of having a festival is the 2m quid to charity. 

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I think the main issue, and this goes back years but is getting worse, is each field acting like it's a separate festival and booking a mix of acts, including big pop ones. West Holts is no longer a jazz/world stage, John Peel isn't just new bands, Avalon isn't just folk, Arcadia is a stage with big names instead of a visual experience, Shangri La has highly advertised scheduled lineups, the Pyramid Stage emphasises a mix of genres instead of booking just the biggest acts.

When the West Holts and Avalon fields are closed, or the entrance to The Park is blocked by people trying to get into Arcadia, or the central sections are heaving because everyone's swarming to William's Green, it has knock on effects on the flow of people around the site. 

I'd much prefer if the simple rule was the most popular acts are on the biggest stages. Just put Mcfly on the Pyramid Stage at midday. It might seem more boring and obvious but it would solve so many crowd issues.

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58 minutes ago, March Hare said:

 

Ditch Greenpeace. No loss imo. From what I can tell they don’t do much like the others ie steward like Oxfam or staff the water points like Wateraid. 

the Greenpeace field is one of the best things about the entire festival 

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Oxfam stewards are taught crowd safety in training but as volunteers, we generally alert someone to issues rather than unilaterally start re-directing.
If you don’t communicate you could be diverting people into a worse situation, so that responsibility has to be higher up.
On Wednesday I was on a road dealing with drivers who were being sent back from both gate A & C & were stuck in an eternal loop asking us at gate B to try and sort it! I called in and asked that someone get gates A & C to talk to each other!
On the ground with people, you could easily have similar issues, you could jump in and send them back down the railway line & they could end up merging with a crowd being sent out of a crush in The Glade!


So - on duty we can alert paid security to our concerns and/or radio in to Oxfam to communicate across the site.

I was at TLC outside my shift time. We were there in good time and tried to get a drink at the bar but it was too busy, then we tried to get some mixers but there were massive queues at all the food stalls. Then we found a spot in the front section and sat down. I decided to make a dash for the ice cream van for mixers, and it was in that 5 minutes that it suddenly went crazy. 

I got back as quick as I could and got back to pretty much where I had been but it was too crowded by then to find him. It was very tight around the edges but fine at the front. When I decided to come back out it was really tricky, but people were lovely!

I guess my point is that the TLC crowd happened really quickly, & there is a limit to how quickly it can be responded to, because you have to check the knock on effect. In a way, that has to be a lesson from Hillsborough. The ill thought through decision to open a gate because of a worrying crowd build up outside, didn’t solve the problem at all, it made it worse. Decisions on crowd control cannot be reactionary, they have to be considered.

I do think there are too many people. Campsites have grown so there is more room for tents than in 2000, but I’d say the actual crowds in and around stages are worse now.

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1 hour ago, Badlands said:

Pricing out people less well off so you don’t have to queue as long for a piss is such an utter shit take.

Not sure upping the price by £20 is pricing people out when you're paying £10-£15 for a meal.

The pricing out ship sailed a looooong time ago, just listen to the voices around you, barley a regional accent anywhere 

Edited by Billy Corgans hair
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15 minutes ago, pedmills said:

I think the main issue, and this goes back years but is getting worse, is each field acting like it's a separate festival and booking a mix of acts, including big pop ones. West Holts is no longer a jazz/world stage, John Peel isn't just new bands, Avalon isn't just folk, Arcadia is a stage with big names instead of a visual experience, Shangri La has highly advertised scheduled lineups, the Pyramid Stage emphasises a mix of genres instead of booking just the biggest acts.

When the West Holts and Avalon fields are closed, or the entrance to The Park is blocked by people trying to get into Arcadia, or the central sections are heaving because everyone's swarming to William's Green, it has knock on effects on the flow of people around the site. 

I'd much prefer if the simple rule was the most popular acts are on the biggest stages. Just put Mcfly on the Pyramid Stage at midday. It might seem more boring and obvious but it would solve so many crowd issues.

Great post. Punters runnning around chasing the big/popular acts is bound to cause extra traffic.

Of course, 'secret sets' aren't secret either...

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4 hours ago, Sku said:

The "crust" has been mentioned many times. And it is the key issue in my view.

Watching back some of the footage, it's clear how much space there was down the front at many of acts which were considered "dangerously crowded".

I think the problem is, that the back has actually become the most popular place to watch from. It's convenient for the bars, the toilet, for food. It allows you to arrive at the last minute. It allows you to rush off to the next thing without getting stuck. You can set up a chair or picnic blanket if so inclined.

Again, and again, there were just crazy crushes at the BACK of stages, but not at the front. It used to be the case that you would avoid the front to avoid the crush, but now it's totally reversed. The front is totally sparse, and you are free to move around there. The back is a nightmare.

This is the key thing I think here. Crowd density. It's clear from all the BBC footage that crowds are sparse down front. Everyone is turning up at the last minute, and wanting to stand at the back. And then even if you want to get down the front, you cannot get through the wall of people, blankets and chairs.

A much smaller number of people causes a field to be full than ever before. I mean, there are many other contributing factors, but it's simple science that lower crowd density makes for a busier feeling festival. This is the key issue here, crowd behaviour has changed.

This 100%. We were caught up in the crush at the back of Macca and it was crazy busy, made worse by people with young kids, chairs, picnic blankets and those massive trolleys they carry their kids around in blocking the path through and getting incredibly annoyed if you tried to squeeze past them. If it was down to me I would ban picnic blankets, chairs and the like from the main stages, might actually encourage some people to explore the festival beyond the pyramid!

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we got stuck in a bad crush after lorde finished. We were down front (which had plenty of space) and kendrick folks were trying to enter as we were trying to get out.  People were actually screaming for help, and one girl had a panic attack.  I've been in worse crushes, but this wasn't cool.  

There was also almost zero security at the park during Squid. 

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