Huge demand for tickets to see 'Celebrity' TV pair in panto

Dave Mark THEATRE bosses in Hull are having to draft in extra staff to cope with the overwhelming demand for tickets for the venue's Christmas pantomime since its stars Cannon and Ball were dropped into the TV series I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!

Customers have taken to calling management phone lines in an attempt to avoid missing out on tickets for Dick Whittington.

Extra pressure will now be placed on the Hull City Council booking office after the ann-ouncement that tickets for American rockers The Strokes at the City Hall on Saturday, Feb 11 go on sale today.

Hull New Theatre manager Michael Lister said: "We understand customers are having problems getting through on the phone at peak times. At any one time we are having up to 20 calls waiting and people queuing out of the box office.

"We would urge customers to be patient. Due to the overwhelming demand for tickets Hull Council are bringing in extra staff to cope and we apologise for any inconvenience caused. The box office can be very busy first thing in the morning and at mid-afternoon but the phone lines are open until 8pm so if customers can't get through I would recommend they try again later in the day."

A rush for tickets has been caused after I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here! stars Jilly Goolden and Carol Thatcher were seen to claim Cannon and Ball had told them the pantomime had already sold out on Saturday night's edition of the ITV1 hit show.

Mr Lister said: "Tickets haven't sold out so customers shouldn't panic. Tickets are selling extremely quickly though. We do expect this to be the best- selling pantomime of all time in Hull."

Dick Whittington at the Hull New Theatre runs from December 15 to January 14. Tickets range from 11.50 to 17.50 with concessions available for children, OAPs, family groups and school groups.

For information or tickets, contact the council booking office under the Hull City Hall, Carr Lane. Alternatively call the booking and information line on 01482 226655. Log on to www.hullcc.gov.uk/ hullnewtheatre for dates and times. Full details on Cannon and Ball can be found on their official website www.cannonandball.moonfruit.com. Full details on I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here can be found at www.itv.com.

Tickets for The Strokes plus support at the Hull City Hall, priced at 23.00, are available to personal callers to the council booking office under the City Hall from 9.30am today or by calling the booking and information line from 10am on 01482 226655. Full details on all shows in the City Hall's autumn/winter season can be found on www.hullcc.gov.uk/hullcityhall.

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