A SOMERSET dairy farmer has made it onto the 2024 New Year Honours List. 

Michael Eavis, Glastonbury Festival founder, was awarded a knighthood for his contributions to music and charity. The festival began on his Somerset farm in 1970, where he still runs a herd of 500 dairy cows. 

"I have had a good life and managed to keep the festival going for 53 years," he said.

"It’s all gone so well in the end. It took 25 years for the public to catch on. We started with 500 people in 1970 and we’ve finished up with millions wanting to come every year now. That’s quite extraordinary isn’t it?"

Michael is also a finalist in the 2023 NMR/RADBF Gold Cup Award. The winner will be announced at Dairy-Tech on February 7. 

"The farm has been a fantastic part of my life," he said.

"We're finalists for the Gold Cup again this year, the UK's premier dairy herds competition. The judges were here earlier this month (December), and we'll find out if we've won in February. So that's a big deal, too. Well, it is to me anyway!" 

RADBF managing director Matthew Knight added: "Sir Michael is a familiar face in the dairy industry, not only as the Glastonbury Festival organiser but as a farmer investing and driving forward one of the most advanced dairy systems. Sir Michael won the NMR RABDF Gold Cup 10 years ago and is shortlisted for the 2023 award.

"The farm has changed considerably over the past decade thanks to the adoption of technology, being clear innovators in the sector, and continuously challenging what is 'normal' in dairy farming."