Glastonbury Festival organisers have admitted allowing human waste to pollute its Worthy Farm site in June 2014.
Founder Michael Eavis appeared today (14 January) at Yeovil Magistrates’ Court, where the judge heard that 39 fish were killed by the sewage after a ‘large quantity’ of sewage filtered in Whitelake River.
The Environment Agency was alerted to increased ammonia levels by sensors in the stream.
Speaking to the BBC outside the court, Eavis said: “We had a problem obviously – there were 200,000 people and we were storing slurry. It was a tank for holding farm slurry but on this occasion we were using it for festival sewage and it was starting to leak.
“It was a brand new build, it cost me £100,000, so that’s my defence.”
The case has adjourned for the time being while both the prosecution and defence compile background reports.
If charged with a category one offence, Glastonbury Festival could be fined between £55,000 to £300,000; however, a category two offence would result in a £20,000 fine.