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Ticket touts and broken website leave Harry Potter fans cursing

Published 22/11/2016

The West End production of Harry Potter and The Cursed Child was named best play at the Evening Standard Theatre Awards
The West End production of Harry Potter and The Cursed Child was named best play at the Evening Standard Theatre Awards

Harry Potter fans have complained about ticket touts and a broken website during attempts to snap up seats for the franchise's Cursed Child play.

The latest batch of 60,000 tickets for the award-winning West End production was released on Tuesday morning.

However, fans of the wizarding franchise criticised ticket sellers Nimax and ATG on social media, as well as posting messages to writer JK Rowling with links to tickets being sold on eBay and StubHub for hundreds of pounds above face value.

It mirrors the reaction of those hoping to get tickets in August during a similar release.

The latest seats, which were priced from £15, went on sale at 11am for performances from December until February 2018.

One eBay listing posted just hours after the tickets were released was offering four seats for £1,500.

Vera Solomon posted: "@jk_rowling @HPPlayLDN still queuing for #CursedChild tix and ticket touts already reselling tickets for ££££ how is this ok?"

Jude Harley added: "Resale already at £1800 for #CursedChild ... no words! @jk_rowling we need a better system."

Other fans complained about the website crashing.

Stuart Prater posted: "@NimaxTheatres I finally get to the front of the queue get 2 tickets in my basket and the website crashes."

Lucy Pinker (@lucyjpinker) said: " Not gonna lie, pretty upset that when I went to enter my details for my Cursed Child tickets it threw me out the site."

Stef Thetford said she had been twice kicked off the website as well as the phone booking office.

"@NimaxTheatres so website kicks me off twice as front of queue and now phone lines done the same!! Good grief! #iamcursed #cursedchild."

@MyrtheKara wrote: "ughhhh trying to buy cursed child tickets, i got all the way through the queue and now every option I pick says "no seats were found"."

Andrew Willows said: "Anyone else got to front of HP ticket queue? It says "your turn" & will be redirected to website asap but nothing happens?"

Earlier this year, Rowling said she wanted to make the theatre accessible to people from all backgrounds.

She said: "What we would really like most of all is to bring people in who have never been to the theatre before.

"I would be so proud to think that kids from my kind of background, who didn't come from particularly theatre-going families, learn what theatre is about through this show. That would be an incredible thing."

Earlier this month, Harry Potter And The Cursed Child was named best play at the Evening Standard Theatre Awards.

A spokeswoman for the production said "significant progress" was being made with policing those reselling tickets.

She added: "As producers there is only so much we can do without the Government enforcing the current legislation along with bringing in stronger measures to target touts on the secondary market specifically.

"We are adding our voice to the significant pressure from the entertainment industry to raise awareness of this issue and make this a key priority."

Addressing website difficulties, she said: "With many people trying to purchase tickets, the ticketing systems are very busy.

"Customers having difficulties booking due to any technical issues are being contacted directly by our ticketing partners to help them complete their bookings."

The production also offers a weekly Friday Forty lottery which gives fans a chance to take part in a ballot for cheap tickets.

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