The Glasto loos are legendary and all part of
the rich festival experience of camping in the wonderful organic
countryside of Somerset with over 115,000 other people.
Glastonbury Poo trucks
According to the
festival organisers the toilets are cleaned and the slurry pits are
emptied at least once a day - there were 22 poo trucks emptying in
Keep well away when they are sucking out - the consequences of a slip
with the hose are ... bad! The dance tent floor in 1997 became flooded
with poo when a tanker tried to suck out excess water inside the tent
- due to heavy rain, and hit the 'pump out' button instead of 'pump
main types of loos at Glastonbury are the portable toilets, and the
'long drop' cubicles.
Portable toilets are fine on the first couple of days - before
the main influx of ticket holders, but after that they are a bit like
Russian roulette. Avoid using the toilets in the main camping areas,
and try and watch the expression on people coming out of them, as
there can be some revolting sights lurking inside the innocent looking
If its hot then they are pretty unbearable, some people take to wearing
masks before they enter the dreaded zones - but nothing stops the
smell, all you can do is try and hold your breath whilst you're inside.
Blokes also have the option to visit the urinals, so there's
no need to pee in the streams or hedges.
festival licence states there must be 300 metres of urinals. In 2004
it had 400m, plus 150m of 'She pee' urinals for women.
'Long drop' loos are the best choice as the festival gets under
way - they don't smell much, but try not to look down as the roofless
stable-doored stalls are positioned above a huge pit - its a long
Not many of
them have locks so make sure you look out for feet before bursting
in on anyone. We've all heard the urban myth of a baby being accidently
dropped down the hole, but in reality take care your mobile/wallet/keys
don't fall out of your pockets as you lower your jeans!
'Shee-pee'loos: women-only urinals were introduced in 2004 - the
girly pink screens were located at either side of the main Pyramid
stage - you are handed a special, disposable cardboard funnel -
called a P-Mate - to help you aim!
The urinals are grouped in fours with dividing partitions between
each one. They were policed to prevent blokes using them.
Shee-pee urinals have been used at other festivals, including in
the Netherlands and have proved very popular. As long as it keeps
down the queues, whatever colour the better!
African Pit Latrines
worth queuing (even up to 45 minutes) towards the end of the weekend
for the African pit latrines at the top of Greenfields, in
the sacred space - King's Meadow.
The charity Water
Aid usually provides about nine of these - wish
there were more. They are cleaned by volunteers and they give you
a jug of water when you use them to help them stay fresh. It's a free
service, but most people tend to give a small donation 'cos they're
so grateful for the pleasant experience.
WaterAid also distribute free drinking water to thirsty fans around
the main stage. Glastonbury festival uses one million gallons of water
over a period of five days.
think it's bad now! Back in the 70's the 'toilets' were only
hand dug holes in the ground, framed with scaffolding and rough strips
of sacking dividing them off ...less people using them though.
The Hell on Earth- a cautionary
As soon as
I awoke I knew I would have to go. The dreaded journey, the same
one I had been repeating for two days and it was getting worse.
You couldn’t imagine just how bad it could be. But that driving
human instinct drove me to line up with the rest, all dreading
our reactions when we finally reached the door and waded inside.
Some were wearing scarves wrapped tightly around their faces now,
giving them a sinister eastern appearance or in some cases more
of an urban terrorist look. At least it protected them from the
searing sun that beat down on us as we stood in our lines. Eye
contact was hardly made this early in the morning, but you could
see the fear in many as they neared their destination.
There were more behind me now than in front as we shuffled steadily
forward. Eyes were raised in unison when a Police Landrover approached
the fenced enclosure, but after a quick look they drove swiftly
past. I began to plan which option to go for as I could see my
queue had the choice of two graffiti covered doors. There were
no outward signs as to which held the most horrors; it was just
down to luck. I felt close to bursting now as one man stood between
me and relief. He was swaying gently in a hypnotic manner that
made me long to copy him, just to take my mind off what was now
becoming pain. His blonde dreadlocks swayed low down his back
and I wondered how it felt to shake them round his head, or lay
on them as he slept. He blearily watched a girl emerge then lurched
forward, fumbling clumsily with the door, but finally finding
his way inside and slamming it shut.
I tried not to breathe through my nose now as acrid fumes filled
the air. The door in front of me began to rock, then suddenly
the whole cubicle slammed face down onto the dusty ground. There
was a general cry of horror from the lines as we all heard the
ghastly liquid ‘slosh’ from within. There was mass hesitation,
until a few brave souls stepped forward and together rolled the
metal box, so that the door was uppermost. Suddenly the occupant
kicked it open, and amid the groans of pity everyone stepped back.
We saw his dripping foot emerge first, followed by his soiled
hands pushing himself up and out of his nightmarish prison…..covered
from beautiful dreadlocks to open-toed sandals…in ……..urghhhhhh!
Then he ran fleeing from the hundreds of eyes that were full of
pity. I entered the portable toilets next door, which seemed a
good choice. I’d be free from using them for a few hours now and
could enjoy the last day at Glastonbury - but maybe not breakfast