A disabled Scots actress was left furious after splashing out over £200 to see one of her favourite singers only to be turned away due to her wheelchair.
Music fan Hannah Moncur-Harper, 17, had travelled hundreds of miles with pal Abby Robbie, 18, to see singer Yungblud perform at Newcastle’s O2 Academy on Tuesday night.
The talented actress, who uses a wheelchair, was overjoyed after securing last-minute tickets for the sell-out gig on Ticketmaster.
But she was left gobsmacked when she was refused entry by security at the venue.
Speaking to the Daily Record, Hannah, from Dundee, said: “We had bought the tickets quite last minute and the whole drive up we were trying to get in touch with people with the access line to say that I was coming.
“I couldn’t get in touch with anybody at all.
“I’ve been in situations like this before where I wasn’t able to get accessible tickets but it’s never been a problem. Most venues make a space for me.”
However, the pair were told by security on arrival that they may not be able to get into the venue due to Hannah’s wheelchair.
This was confirmed by a manager who reportedly said they could only have three wheelchair-users in the gig because of health and safety reasons.
Hannah, who is best known for her role as Chloe Reeves in CBBC’s The Dumping Ground, continued: “I didn’t even think this would happen, it was the last of my worries.
“When I turned up, security asked if I’d phoned and I’d said we couldn’t get in touch and had been trying all day.
“He spoke to a manager who said ‘we can only have three wheelchairs in the venue for health and safety reasons and they don’t want to risk losing their licence, so you can’t come in’.”
Hannah pleaded with security, explaining they had travelled from Dundee and spent hundreds on the tickets, travel and a hotel for the night.
But they were once again knocked back.
And the teen was left furious after being told by security that the manager had said: “If you could walk then we would be able to let you in but we don’t have space for another wheelchair.”
Hannah claims the manager refused to either come outside or even let the teens inside to speak with them.
She added: “I was looking at what the venue is like inside and I just can’t believe that they can’t fit more than three people in a wheelchair inside.
“I do understand they’ve got their health and safety regulations but it just sounded ridiculous.”
The 17-year-old, who has a spinal cord injury that happened when she was just months old, continued: “I was genuinely really shocked by it all.
“I’ve dealt with discrimination from places before, and even at one of his other shows, but I’ve never actually been turned away from somewhere.”
In a desperate last-ditch attempt to seek assistance, the teens took to social media to call on Yungblud to help.
One tweet from Hannah read: ” @yungblud we are currently outside your show in Newcastle where we have just been refused entry because i’m a wheelchair user and there’s no space left, we have travelled over four hours to come and see you tonight”
She added: “Is there anything you can do to help? I know this isn’t your problem but it seems ridiculous that there is nothing nobody in the venue can do to let us in.”
The gutted pair remained stuck outside for the rest of the gig.
Knowing that the singer – whose name is Dominic Richard Harrison – typically comes out to see fans after his shows, Hannah penned a sign to hold up when he came out the venue.
It read: “Dom, we’ve travelled 300 miles to be here and have been refused entry due to being a wheelchair user. Please help.”
“He saw our sign and got us some signed set lists, and it was lovely, but we’d be spent well over £200 for the whole trip and it didn’t really make up for it.”
A spokesperson for the 02 Academy Newcastle described the incident as ‘regrettable’ and said an internal inquiry has now been launched.
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A statement from the venue said: “We are aware of this unfortunate and regrettable incident and have begun a thorough internal inquiry.
“We sincerely apologise for any misunderstanding that has resulted in a negative experience.”