Belfast Telegraph

Monday 1 September 2014

Garth Brooks fans in a low place as tickets refund 'could take three weeks'

Devastated: John, Gary and Colleen Madden at TicketMaster to get refunds on their tickets

The long process of refunding £21m worth of Garth Brooks tickets is under way – with fans in Northern Ireland among the 400,000 disappointed people claiming back their cash.

Following a licensing fiasco and the subsequent cancellation of five gigs at Croke Park in Dublin, Ticketmaster started refunding ticketholders at 9am yesterday.

Among the let-down ticketholders claiming back their money on the first day of the refund process were the Madden family from north Belfast.

Some 46 of the clan had been due to travel to Dublin by coach to see the US country star (right) – writer of Friends In Low Places –perform at GAA HQ, nearly 16 years after he last staged a concert in Ireland.

John Madden said: "We camped for two days, paid cash and you have to wait 21 days to get your money. Ridiculous.

"Plus 46 of us lost our coach fares for going down there.

"Not letting him play is unbelievable. Bring him to Belfast and we will do the five shows."

Anyone who bought tickets over the phone, online or on their mobile don't have to anything for the refund, including service charges, to be put back in to their bank account.

This process will take seven-to-10 working days.

Patricia McClean from Armoy, Co Antrim, said: "I don't have to do anything. It is just a matter of waiting for the money to go back into my account."

For those who queued in person for tickets the process will take a little longer.

Following some in-store form-filling, it will take up to 21 days before the funds will be transferred into their bank account.

If tickets were bought or part-bought using a gift card, a new one will be issued to the same value.

For those who bought tickets from unauthorised sellers it is more complicated as it is up to the purchaser to contact the ticket seller for the refund.

Jimmy Hughes from Trading Standards Northern Ireland said: "The law basically says when the ticket is no longer of use to you, you have a breach of contract and you have to look to the party with whom you made a contract.

"In plainer language – who did you buy it from? That is the only place you can look for compensation.

"So if you didn't buy your ticket from Ticketmaster you have no contract with Ticketmaster and they have no liability to you."

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