The Spice Girls’ latest concert was hit by chaos as fans complained of overcrowding, long queues and poor security checks.
Mel B, Geri Horner, Mel C and Emma Bunton took to the stage at Ricoh Arena in Coventry on Monday for the sixth night of their Spice World 2019 reunion tour.
Fans on social media were delighted by the Spice Girls performance - but many were left outraged by ‘shambolic’ organisation and ‘rude’ staff at the venue.
Ticket-holders claimed they were made to wait outside the arena until support act Jess Glynne had finished her set, before gates were opened and large crowds were allowed to flood in, at risk of injury.
There were even claims that security and ticket checks were abandoned as stewards struggled to cope with the volume of people.
The @spicegirls performance tonight was brilliant!
However, I did not see or experience any searching happening upon entry to the @RicohArena. The doors were opened so people could push and flood in unsafely without any tickets being checked. Very worrying! #SpiceWorldtour2019
— Boom (@djboomuk) June 3, 2019
@djboomuk wrote on Twitter: “The @spicegirls performance tonight was brilliant! However, I did not see or experience any searching happening upon entry to the @RicohArena. The doors were opened so people could push and flood in unsafely without any tickets being checked. Very worrying!”
Martin Brady tweeted: “@RicohArena what happened last night? Crowd control was diabolical, security stopped letting people in... 45 minute wait at the door... sort it out for those going tonight. #spicegirls were AMAZING”
Bag checks were stopped. Security throwing people out for no reason. People with tickets not allowed in as standing pitch full. Now 1h15 to get out carpark and I’v moved 6 inches.
— Bex (@meloncarrier) June 3, 2019
Following the issues getting into the venue many Wannabe fans then found themselves stranded in the carpark for hours as vehicles queued to get out.
Sarah Hollyhead complained: “@RicohArena after paying £25 for parking, sitting still over an hour to get out is ridiculous!”
@RicohArena after paying £25 for parking, sitting still over an hour to get out is ridiculous!
— Sarah Hollyhead (@SarahHollyhead) June 3, 2019
I have never come access such a poorly run stadium in my life, with such DISGUSTING staff.
When you’ve waited years to see @spicegirls and spent £450, you don’t expect to be treated like that!
Coventry & @RicohArena - it has not been a pleasure!
— Alex Fern (@alexfern03) June 4, 2019
On top of the problems at the venue itself there were also reports of heavy traffic congestion around the arena and problems with trains at Coventry station due to the high volume of travellers on their way to see the Spice Girls.
The first two shows of the Spice World tour in Dublin and Cardiff were overshadowed when large numbers of the audience complained about the sound being “diabolical”.
Mel B posted a video message on Instagram, telling ticket holders: “Hey guys, thank you for attending our show tonight. We will see you in Cardiff. And hopefully the vocals and the sound will be much, much better.”
The days leading up to the concert had seen the band dogged by rumours they were in crisis. Horner and Mel B were said to have fallen out after Mel B claimed she and Horner had had a lesbian fling during the nineties, which Horner denied.
And Scary Spice was forced to deny reports she had gone blind in one eye after being struck with a painful eye infection.
Victoria Beckham - who chose not to take part in the tour after several meetings - sent the rest of the band a good luck message on Instagram, writing: “Good luck to the girls today as they start their tour! x VB”.
The Spice Girls are set to play Coventry’s Ricoh Arena again tonight before continuing the tour to Sunderland, Edinburgh and Bristol, before finishing with three show’s at London’s Wembley Stadium.
Ricoh Arena have been contacted for comment.