Irish News

Wednesday 30 July 2014

Ticket-less fans in low places as fourth Garth gig ruled out for now

Mark O'Regan

Published 31/01/2014|02:30

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Garth Brooks fans Joanne Mulcahy and Kate Ronan from Corbally, Limerick who queued outside Gleeson's Sports Scene Limerick for 2 days for tickets only to be told there were none when they got to the door. Picture: Don Moloney / Press 22

A FOURTH gig has been ruled out for now for bitterly disappointed Garth Brooks fans – thousands of whom camped in the rain or queued for hours to try and land a ticket.

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A record 240,000 tickets were snapped up within 90 minutes of going on sale.

And now the black market has swung into action.

Tickets with a face value of €65 are being offered for €250 – one website reportedly has sellers demanding an extortionate €800.

Meanwhile, another downer for disappointed fans is confirmation from promoter Peter Aiken that a fourth and final gig is out of the question for now.

"Unfortunately, there are some big football games on the weekend in question. We're right in the middle of the season – and qualifiers are on the following weekend."

This will dash the last hope for a legion of heartbroken fans.

Hundreds of tickets are on offer on websites such as eBay and Seatwave at multiples of their face value, with some buyers determined to make a killing following such unprecedented demand.

Aiken promotions said it was the fastest selling concert the firm has ever been involved with – it's the first time an artist sold out three dates at the Dublin venue in one day.

Although a third concert was added for Sunday, July 27, it too was sold out within minutes.

The nationwide exodus to try and land a much-sought-after ticket prompted Garth Brooks' manager, Bob Doyle, to comment on behalf of the country music superstar: "We're thrilled."

Thousands of fans queued outside various outlets desperate to attend the country music star's 'Comeback Special'. But huge numbers were disappointed, including up to 100 fans in Limerick who had been queuing for up to 48 hours.

Tempers became frayed, and gardai were called to Gleeson's Sports Scene, where some fans had queued for days to try and bag a ticket. It emerged that only the first 40 in the queue made the cutline, and for a period it seemed the angry mood could spill over into violence.

Steve Gleeson of Gleeson's Sports Scene said he had "every sympathy" for the fans left disappointed, but it wasn't possible to access the Ticketmaster system before 9am and the tickets then had to be printed off.

Kate Ronan, from Mill Road, Corbally in Limerick, had slept outside the shop for more than 48 hours in extremely cold conditions.

SCREAMING

"I'm absolutely devastated. I was next in line," she said. "They had 49 tickets, I was number 50.

"They were only letting in two people at a time and it was very slow. When you went in you were waiting for the shop to print the tickets."

She added: "The gardai came and told fans to go away and that the tickets were all gone. There was people screaming and shouting. Two detectives arrived and they were in the store for about 10 minutes.

"The gardai said they would bring Paddy wagons and arrest us if we didn't leave."

Eventually the crowd dispersed and no arrests were made.

Irish Independent

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