Black Country venue bosses sickened by greedy touts

12:09pm Tuesday 29th January 2013

MANAGERS at a Black Country music venue say they are sickened by ticket touts cashing-in on an emotional farewell tour.

Guitarist Wilko Johnson has been diagnosed with terminal cancer and refused treatment, which he has been told would only extend his life by a few months.

His four-date farewell tour includes a visit to the Robin 2 club in Bilston on Thursday March 7.

Tickets priced at £17.50 sold out quickly and are now appearing on the internet for sale at nearly ten times their face value.

A spokesperson for the Robin said: "Wilko kept his prices low so that his everyday fans could obtain a ticket to wish him well and celebrate his life with him one last time.

"We sold out of tickets for this show three hours after they went on sale. This filled us with pride as we thought Wilko fans will really give him a good send off and make it a truly amazing gig.

"To our disappointment, a member of staff here checked eBay to find that the tickets are being touted at £79."

"It's come to our attention that they are being sold on other outlets for more that double this amount.

"We all know touting happens, it always has, but in this case we just think this really is quite unscrupulous.

"The lack of conscience in these touts really does sicken us. To exploit the fans at such an extortionate level is quite unbelievable."

Wilko Johnson became a star as guitar with 70s blues rockers Dr Feelgood, he was also a member of Ian Drury and The Blockheads.

He is credited with inspiring performers like John Lydon and Paul Weller.

He recently appeared on TV playing an executioner in the US series Game of Thrones.

The 65-year-old rocker told the BBC his diagnosis of pancreatic cancer - doctors have given him 10 months to live - has made him feel "vividly alive" and if he remains well enough to complete his final tour he will be a "happy man".

An online petition supported by the Robin 2 against internet ticket agencies re-selling tickets at prices significantly higher than face value is live at www.ipetitions.com

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