So, initially I wasn’t interested in the concert that was going to be performing at Peterborough United Football Ground, mainly as I’m not personally a concert follower. The only one I’ve ever been to was waaaayyy back in 1989, Wembley Stadium for Cliff Richard (and before you start….he was really popular back then). It was ‘The Main Event’ I got to see him sing and came away with a lovely colour glossy brochure, so was chuffed to bits. However, I missed out on Madonna and Michael Jackson when they played at Leeds in the 1980s, because as I say, it just didn’t interest me to stand at Rounday Park with masses of people getting squashed etc., but hey, I could really kick myself now!

Every now and again when switching around channels for something to watch, I do tune into The Voice, I don’t watch the whole series, just snippets, but like to see the Blind Auditions… on this particular episode, Lonnie Donegan’s son was on and it stirred Tom Jones who then went on to sing with him. It was brilliant that Tom could just get up and sing straight off the cuff. So last week, as it’s coming up to my birthday, I was given two surprise tickets to go and see him. Guess what? I was actually excited. If there was someone to see or hear before they get tooo old, or the inevitable happens, this was the man to listen to.

We collected our tickets from the Box Office placed on the entrance to the ground at 3pm where there wasn’t much of a queue. Much better to get them now as it was early rather than having to stand in a queue for ages. All collected and happy.

The grounds opened at around 5pm ish but that we too early for us to be milling around when living in Peterborough, so we went over at 6.15pm. For those with Sapphire or Emerald tickets there was a Fast Track section where the queueing at this time was direct entry. All other ticket holders; gold, silver etc where in the main queue which was already travelling from the entry gates around the corner and up Hawksbill Way. On entry you have a back search by security, get your ticket checked and are then given your arm band.. gold, silver etc. If you had Sapphire or Emerald there was also a souvenire lanyard and badge which came with 4 x £5 drinks vouchers. There were also hospitality tickets too where you could eat first as a special treat too.

Into the grounds and there were plenty of toilet facilities and food. Donuts & Coffee, Fish & Chips, Burgers, Fajitas, Prosecco & a memorabilia van. Food was mediocre pricing – Fish & Chips £8 / donuts £3…The souvenirs were a CD, T-Shirts, Mugs, but no souvenir programme (disappointed as I like to always buy a programme for any shows I attend). So next time please make one. 🙂

After having a nice dish of fish & chips (were really nice actually) we binned the litter and made our way in to the field. Lanyard checked and we entered the stadium. Many were already seated or inside enjoying themself and the weather was fine with just a few dark clouds beginning to come over. (When you buy your tickets you also have the opportunity to purchase their survival bag £11 which includes a Branded “LHG Live” Tote Bag, Sunscreen, Hand Sanitiser, Pocket Tissues, Glowstick, Mints, Torch, Water, Plasters and most importantly a Rain Poncho). We brought our own raincoats as to be fair we didn’t see the use of many of the other bits.

In the seated area were the inside bars where drinks could be purchased. The only downside on this is that with the included £5 Drink Voucher it was a bit awkward buying drinks. Soft drinks were £3 and spirit cans eg Pimms & Lemonade or Gin & Tonic were £6. So you’d think that would be easy.. buy a £6 drink use your £5 voucher and give the £1 as extra… but oh no, you couldn’t do that, you have to buy your drink ‘fully’ with vouchers. So that meant a £6 drink would use up £10 of your vouchers as they wouldn’t let you split it… not a problem with not giving you change: e.g buying a soft drink of £3 with a voucher of £5 – as that’s usually how vouchers work anyway, but to say you couldn’t add cash to a purchase when you could buy your drink for cash on it’s own, wasn’t right! (In our opinion) Otherwise the vouchers should be £6 to make it a fair game.

First up on stage was @TheLotteryWinners who played as the warmup band to keep the crowd happy as they waited for the main event. More people were seated and in attendance all around the stadium now. The rain had already started and stopped and started and stopped, a few brollies went over heads and a handful of ponchos were put on.. it didn’t last long though. Seating was in 3 columns which started just a few metres from the stage.

Lottery Winners finished their gig to lots of applause and the stage crew got on with preparations for the stage. At around 8.45pm there was roar from the crowd as they had seen Tom Jones leave his unit and walk to back stage. Minutes later and everyone was on their feet and cheering as he came on stage and gave his hello. Dressed in traditional black with a great light pink jacket Tom looked good for his 79 years of age… and we musn’t forget how old this icon is. He’s had a full musical career and is still going strong.

He sang some new, some old, some religious songs, some additional good old ‘Rock’n’Roll’ in there too…and some we’ve personally never heard: ‘Burning Hell’ was one of the first to be sang with a flame background for a great entry. It’s Not Unusual’ had everyone on their feet singing along… and of course ‘Delilah’ with a twist to the original from way back in 1969, ‘Fever’, ‘Tower of Song’, ‘Sex Bomb’ came up and everyone cheered being on of their favourites. Tom mentioned about his latest series of The Voice and the late Lonnie Donegan’s song and then sang that for us.. ‘I’ll Never Fall In Love Again’. Old favourites: ‘What’s New PussyCat’, ‘The Green Green Grass of Home’ and ‘Kiss’ he also showed us that, at his age, he still had a few moves left in him as he performed.. ‘You Can Leave Your Hat On’ along with a few hip swings.

The crowd was mixed age group, a lot of the older generation obviously wanting to see their teen idol but also the middle and younger generation like us attending too. Older women still with the idea of throwing not only a rose, but knickers tied to it too….. ! Lots of the crowd especially women were coming from their seats further back to take photos, to dance, take videos and just be up close and were being ushered back to their seats in the front strip, mainly as they were in the way of the fans who had spent more money on their tickets to be at the front. It’s obviously events like this that take a lot of controlling of the crowds and obviously your gold or silver wrist bands help to determine where you should be, however it’s harder to control than you think especially when not all the stewards are on this side of the fence.  If you want a great seat you’ve really got to pick the front rows as it’s very close. When you can sit and see someone perform propertly rather than being a small blip and just listening, it really does make a difference.

I personally was in awe. This man, for his age, has such a stage presence.. .he was up there for just over an hour including his encore. His voice is astonishingly powerful and you can see that he’s an entertainer, loves what he does

Would I recommend his Word Tour 2019? – As a non-fan, non-concert-interested individual….. DEFINITELY! I’m converted! – If you’re looking for a true ‘iconic’ original singer with no trap doors, no flying around, no laser beams, no explosions, just pure, real, live music from the heart. See Sir Tom Jones.

This concert was organised by the Liz Hobbs Group where you can follow his next performances at Bristol, Colchester, Dundee & Penrith. If you like concerts and what to know what’s up next they are also organising Tears for Fears. What’s next for Posh? Nothing on the horizon as yet.. after Elton John and Craig David and now Tom Jones.. who knows?

Sir Thomas John Woodward OBE, known professionally as ‘Tom Jones’, a Welsh singer who’s career has spanned six decades since his emergence as a vocalist with a string of top ten hits in the mid-1960s. (wiki)

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