Spice Girls in Sunderland: Metro queues were 'best thing' about Stadium of Light gig

A transport chief has admitted being ‘terrified’ by Stadium of Light gigs – while another said Metro queues were the ‘best thing’ about the Spice Girls concert.

Friday, 5th July 2019, 14:48 pm
Updated Friday, 5th July 2019, 15:18 pm
Spice Girls in Sunderland

The touring pop legends performed a leg of their Spice World tour at the Stadium of Light, attracting fans from across the country.

With 50,000 visitors flocking into the city, council bosses developed a travel plan to manage the crowds, including road closures.

Cabinet member for Environment and Transport, Coun Amy Wilson, said the Metro was key to dealing with the “colossal” numbers.

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“The Metro queues were the best part of coming out of the concert,” she said.

“For myself and everyone else who was trying to get home, the crowds were colossal coming over the bridge.”

She added: “There were people there who were waiting to be picked up and they were going to be standing there at least two hours, but the Metro queues were just flowing.

“It was an amazing night and the Metro did us proud.”

The comments came during the Joint Transport Committee, Tyne and Wear Sub-Committee, on July 4.

Huw Lewis, customer services director for Nexus, speaking at the meeting, praised staff for getting fans home safely.

“We’re always slightly terrified by concerts at the Stadium of Light,” he told the committee at Gateshead Civic Centre.

“It’s a huge job to move people in and out of the city and we want them to spend as long as possible in the city.

“I love the fact that many people went early and got the message to go and enjoy Sunderland before the concert.”

He added: “We did get people home and I think it’s tribute to the very difficult job that staff do.

“The same staff who are controlling, monitoring and managing anti-social behaviour on the system one night, the following night, are going out to support a lot of people having a party.

“They worked really hard to make sure there was a party atmosphere on the train so it didn’t feel as long and everyone had a good time on the way there and home.”