The Isle of Wight Festival site is a swamp

HAVING FUN 'Blaise Franklin (right) and Nathan Mursall wallow in the mud at the campsite at the Isle of Wight festival.
HAVING FUN 'Blaise Franklin (right) and Nathan Mursall wallow in the mud at the campsite at the Isle of Wight festival.
Hampshire police and crime commissioner Michael Lane. Picture: Malcolm Wells

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This morning campers at the Isle of Wight festival awoke to the aftermath of yesterday’s torrential rain, which turned parts of Seaclose Park into a vast swamp.

But as organisers raced to put down more metal tracks - in the hope of preventing cars becoming stuck in the deep mud again - many campers took advantage of the unexpected sunshine.

QUAGMIRE The scene from the festival site

QUAGMIRE The scene from the festival site

Sarah Kent, 27, of Powerscourt Road, North End, Portsmouth, said she and her friends had spent six hours in their VW campervan after arriving at the island yesterday.

‘At first we thought it was a bit annoying, but it would soon clear,’ she said. ‘Then as the hours went on we started to hear from people walking by that it was stationary all the way to the campsite.

‘It was awful, we couldn’t leave our van and we ended up walking through almost knee-high mud and putting our tent up in semi-darkness when we arrived at 10pm.

‘But this morning we’re just trying to get on with it. It’s warm, if a bit windy, and all we want to do is chill out and wait for the music to start.

‘It wasn’t the best way to start a festival but it can only get better from here!’

Other travellers, like Bethan Phillips, 25, of Chichester Road, Portsmouth, abandoned the buses they were riding in, in favour of a long, wet walk through the rain.

She said: ‘We didn’t know how long we would have to wait, so we decided to walk.

‘It was cold and pretty horrible, but by the time we arrived, and saw how little the traffic had moved in the hour and a half we walked for, it looked like the right choice.

‘I felt sorry for all the people stuck in their cars all day only to find a quagmire when they arrived.

‘We found a decent pitch but we heard a lot of people had to camp in really wet fields.

‘I don’t understand how things could have gone so wrong. Hopefully Elbow tonight will make everything worth it!’

There have also been problem reported with vandals removing the taps from water points, leaving campers to pay £2 for vital bottles of water.

But after last night’s chaos, the atmosphere in the campsites is relaxed and most people are making the best of the situation.

Dan Rogers, 30, from Havant, said: ‘It’s what festivals are all about! Mud, strife and chaos!

‘We won’t let it get us down - unless our tent blows away. That would be a bit rubbish.’