S

ir Paul McCartney will be performing at a Somerset music venue the night before his Glastonbury title film is revealed, it has been revealed.

A surprise performance starring the 80-year-old former Beatle was announced on Thursday, with “first come, first served” tickets selling out in less than an hour.

The Cheese and Grain entertainment venue in Frome, Somerset will be hosting Sir Paul from 5pm on Friday.

Their website reads: “In 24 hours, Paul McCartney will be performing live, at Frome, at Cheese and Grain.

“What an incredible opportunity to watch Paul warm up to his iconic Glastonbury performance this weekend.

“What a wonderful thing… we were told this was not going to be his normal movie so it was going to be an afternoon of wonderful surprises.”

Sir Paul will become the oldest-ever solo head of the Glastonbury Festival when he takes to the stage this weekend, marking exactly a week after celebrating his 80th birthday.

The festival will return with the former Beatle as Saturday night host, the second time he topped the Pyramid stage chart after his performance in 2004.

This year’s music show also features celebrities Billie Eilish and Kendrick Lamar, with Diana Ross filling the spot for Sunday Teatime Legends.

On Thursday, Glastonbury co-host Emily Eavis thanked festival goers for their commitment to the event, saying she thought “the best people in the world come here”.

The 42-year-old was speaking the day after the festival opened for the first time in three years after it was canceled twice amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Eavis told the festival’s on-site newspaper, Glastonbury Free Press: “We’ve offered refunds, but very few people have accepted us.

“The commitment people have shown to us is by no means obvious and it means a lot.

“I really think the best people in the world come here.

“The bands have always said that this audience is the most generous, respectful and supportive people out there.

“So I want to thank everyone who has supported and stuck with us over the past three years.

“And now I just hope you all have a great time.”

Eavis said that having to cancel Glastonbury in 2020 and 2021 was “a very sad and quite traumatic thing to go through”.

She added: “Especially when you cancel and you really don’t know when you’re going to come back.

“But there is no escape from the pandemic – everyone has been affected to some extent by it.

“And in the end, this is just a festival; There are greater things going on in the world. But to be able to open the gate again and bring people back together for the sake of pure joy is a wonderful thing.”

More than 200,000 people are attending Glastonbury’s nearly 800-acre (3.2 million square meter) site in Pilton, Somerset this year, according to statistics shared by the festival.

That total at Worthy Ranch includes 138,000 ticket sales and 67,000 employees, and the venue includes 500 pubs, 100 performance stages and 101 bars, as well as a “secret”.

The festival also raises more than £2 million for charities each year, for 500 causes.

Having previously spoken about the money lost due to flight cancellations, she said: “We definitely went through some financial struggles.

“It is very hairy.

“People forget that we are still an independent festival.

“It has been a long way for us to recover from the last two years, but the important thing is that we are back.

“And it feels great to be able to focus back on the fun things.”

Festival held at Worthy Farm in Somerset (Yui Mok/PA) / PA wire

Last-minute changes to the Glastonbury lineup include rocker Terry Reid vacating Sunday afternoon on the Acoustic Stage.

He will be replaced by Glenn Tilbrook, Squeeze’s lead vocalist and guitarist.

Wolf Alice, who was performing on the Pyramid Stage on Friday, tweeted in the early hours of Thursday morning to say they were stranded in Los Angeles due to their flight being cancelled.

In a tweet to British Airways, they wrote: “Anyway @British_Airways was there to get us to the UK from La before we were due to play glastonbury on Friday afternoon, our flight was over. cancel :(.”

One reply from the airline said to text and they would “see what we can do for you”.

The band also tweeted: “Does anyone have a private jet in La?” added: “Our flights have been canceled and we need to get to glastonbury no joke.”

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