Oxegen exodus reaches conclusion

Mon, Jul 12, 2010, 01:00

An exodus of about 40,000 people from Punchestown Racecourse is complete as concert promoter MCD begins to pack up its Oxegen festival for another year.

Traffic in and around the Co Kildare venue is heavy this afternoon as festival goers, some of who have been on site since Thursday, make their back into the real world. Attendees were given until 6pm to vacate the venue.

Hip-hop royal Eminem closed the festival last night and easily drew the largest crowd of a weekend. His set featured a mix of old and new material with Stan, The Way I Am and 3am among the tracks plucked from his back catalogue.

Among the other acts that took to the stage over the weekend were Muse, Jay Z, Arcade Fire, Florence and the Machine, Faithless and The Prodigy.

Many festival goers said New York rapper Jay Z and a powerful stadium rock performance from Muse were the highlights of the weekend.

One of the main talking points of the weekend was the weather. Fans arriving on Thursday were greeted by rain which persisted until the early hours of yesterday morning.

Parts of the blue campsite, the largest at the festival, resembled a landfill this morning with items such as mud coated air mattresses, collapsed tents, barbecues, wellies and panties abandoned by weekend revellers.

A small number of concert goers decided to set fire to their tents as they departed the campsite, while some of those who remained had taken to diving on top of tents abandoned by their owners. One over-zealous reveller was being restrained by four stewards as other campers made their way towards the car park.

MCD said the festival clean up was under way this morning and that about 150 tonnes of waste had already been collected by its 400-strong cleaning team. It expects to recycle about half of what is collected.

A Garda spokesman said there were no major incidents to report and that a total of 125 people were arrested for public order offences. There were 360 drug seizures.