ROYAL fans were devastated yesterday after being told they had won golden tickets to the Coronation Concert — only to find them all sold out.
A clumsily-worded email from Ticketmaster said they had been successful in a ballot and had until tomorrow to claim passes, but needed to “act quickly”.
They were then handed out on a first-come, first-served basis, meaning many who thought they had one of the hottest tickets in town lost out.
The star-studded May 7 gig at Windsor Castle will include Katy Perry and Hello singer Lionel Richie.
One disappointed fan — ice-cream shop boss Aaron Gill, 54, from Chester, Cheshire — booked a hotel for £400 moments after getting the email.
He said: “It clearly states you have two days. My first thought was I need to sort accommodation. I rang my girlfriend and she was really excited.
“Then within ten minutes I got another email basically saying they’re all gone. It was a real sucker-punch.”
“The ballot process began in February with 5,000 pairs of tickets up for grabs.
“When details were released, it was spelled out that tickets would be allocated “based on the geographical spread of the UK population and not on a first come, first served basis”.
Hotel manager James Pembridge, 33, of Swindon, Wilts, rang his mum Susan Sainsbury, 59, to tell her they were going — only to have to call her back ten minutes later to apologise.
Dad-of-two James, from Swindon, Wilts, said: “She was gutted. It feels like I’ve let her down.”
Highways adviser Rob Bailey, 58, from Parbold, Lancs, fumed: “It was like someone telling you you’ve won the lottery, and two hours later saying, ‘Sorry, you’re too late’.”
Ticketmaster said yesterday’s tickets had been unclaimed by ballot winners and so were offered to people unsuccessful in the two main rounds.
Their email started: “Congratulations”.
It added: “Tickets in this supplementary round are being offered to a randomly selected group of ballot winners on a first come, first served basis, so you will need to act quickly in claiming your tickets.”
It included a link headlined in bold capitals: “HOW TO CLAIM YOUR TICKETS NOW.”
The email also states: “You will have until 12:00 on 27th April to claim your tickets. If you do not claim your tickets by this date then they will be re-allocated.”
Ticketmaster said yesterday: “Everyone who was successful in the two main ballot rounds was offered a pair of tickets, provided that they claimed them within three weeks.
“Today, any unclaimed tickets were released on a first-come, first-served basis to those who had previously applied.
“These inevitably went very quickly.”