Postcard from... Madrid


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The Independent Online

A 65-day vigil outside the Vicente Calderon stadium in Madrid is almost over for hundreds of One Direction fans who have been queuing day and night to get front row positions at the band’s shows in the Spanish capital next Thursday and Friday.

Armed with tents, roll mats and provisions, the mainly female crowd has camped outside Atletico Madrid's ground since 9 May.

They have organised a list system which requires somebody being present from each queue group at mutually agreed roll-call times throughout the day and night. If you miss one, your group drops to the back.

Students Rocio, 20, Delia, 21, and Nuria 19, are part of a 50-strong group who have been there since the beginning, operating a shift system between them to secure their prime slots. “Our parents think we are mad, but they go along with it,” Delia said.

The girls explained the problems they have endured. “One night some lads came and started shouting abuse,” Rocio said.

The girls all attended One Direction’s gig in Madrid last year, but said the queue to assure positions near the stage this year was much longer.

“There is a list system like this in Barcelona as well, but it isn’t anywhere near as long as the one here,” says Rocio. “We are bigger fans here in Madrid.”