Laughs were few and far between today (August 15) as hundreds were left disappointed queuing for tickets outside Harrogate Theatre to see Michael McIntyre next month.
It was announced last week that the comedy superstar would play an exclusive show at the 500-seater venue in September and fans wasted little time in their quest for tickets.
Tickets for the show went on sale at 10am this morning and some fans began queuing as early as 7.15 to watch the comedian.
Despite the tickets selling out within a matter of minutes, many were left frustrated as the online ticket website crashed and phone lines were engaged.
Bill and Joan Caw had made the journey to Harrogate from Boroughbridge described the purchasing procedure as ‘dreadful’ after unsuccessfully queuing since 8.45am.
Bill said: “There was a something like a twenty minute delay after 10am and we were told the system was down and then a gentleman came out and told us it was up and running again.
“We only had about 20 people in from of us in the queue but then found out it was all sold out. I can’t see how there was an equal allocation for those that bothered to come down and queue.”
Another Harrogate resident, who preferred to remain anonymous, complained that the allocation of six tickets per person was ‘a shambles’ considering the theatre’s small capacity.
She said: “There were a lot of people buying the maximum amount of tickets. They should have been limited to two tickets per person on evidence of how quickly they sold out.
“McIntyre sells out the 02 in minutes so you would have thought they would have anticipated there would have been a lot of interest.”
Chris Platt was another Harrogate resident who missed out on tickets but said people should have got down earlier to secure their ticket.
He said: “There were people here at quarter past seven to get tickets and that shows how early in the morning you have to get up to get a ticket.”
Kerry Maddison, Box Office Manager at Harrogate Theatre, said the online system crashing had no impact on those who queued in person as there was an equal allocation of tickets online, over the phone and in person.
She said: “The tickets sold out in six minutes and it was the promoters who decided on six tickets per person, it had nothing to do with Harrogate Theatre.
“We are really pleased the show has sold out but can’t help disappointing people. There was ten times the demand for tickets so we could have sold around 5000 tickets.”