Thousands of U2 fans are up in arms after the website handling the advanced ticket sale of the band's 2005 Vertigo tour fell over
U2 fans - who had forked out $40 (£21) for the privilege of joining U2.com enabling them to snap up tickets to gigs before they went on general sale - had received a six-digit code which they could use to buy tickets.
But organisers misjudged the demand for tickets and the site flogging the tickets ground to a halt rendering the codes - which can only be used once - useless.
Sources say that as many as 15,000 fans were hit by the glitch, but Ticketmaster, the outfit handling the ticket sales, declined to comment on numbers.
Apologising to punters, it explained: "Ticketmaster experienced an incredibly high level of demand. This resulted in the website, ticketmaster.co.uk, offering a slower than normal service.
"Unfortunately some customers were timed out of the website and found that when they attempted to continue with their transaction, the six-digit code was no longer valid."
The company has emailed all those U2 fan club members who received a code explaining that "there is still ticket availability at all UK venues".
"We are confident that all those affected by the problem today will still be able to purchase tickets," it said.
The band begins its eagerly awaited Vertigo 2005 world tour in San Diego on March 28. ®