13:09 21 August 2012
Hordes of screaming fans queued for hours to meet Olympic diver Tom Daley, and police officers had to be called in to help disperse them. The die-hard fans brought their sleeping bags and camped outside the Bluewater shopping centre in Kent where Tom was due to arrive. The loyal fans arrived at the shopping mall at 1AM in the morning, even though Tom was due to arrive at 12:30PM the next day.
Tom was at the Bluewater shopping center for his book signing, which was held at Waterstones. However, due to the pack of hysterical fans, the bookstore was forced to close the queue. They also said that crowd levels were unprecedented and was bigger than the crowds that typical boy bands attracted.
A spokeswoman from Kent Police said: “We have a team of 11 officers at the Bluewater shopping centre, some of whom were on a training day. It was good that there were so many there because the crowds to see Mr. Daley were quite big and excitable.”
Indeed, the crowds were a bit on the aggressive side, as some of the teenage girls even had the words ‘I Love Tom’ painted on their faces. They also chanted “We want Tom, we want tom!” as they waited for the Olympic bronze medalist.
The police officers on duty were forced to ask some people to leave. Mostly, these were the fans who didn’t have tickets but wanted to see the diver. “As you can imagine, they were causing a bit of a kerfuffle,” the spokeswoman said.
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