Dearne MP backs calls for end to ticket touts that rip off fans, including One Direction and Arctic Monkeys

Michael Dugher MP
Michael Dugher MP

A Dearne MP has called for new powers to be introduced to stop ticket touts ripping off customers.

Michael Dugher, Labour’s Barnsley East MP, said many sports and music fans are forced into paying extortionate prices – often several times face value – to attend events on the secondary market as a result of ticket touting.

He cited One Direction’s recent UK tour as an example and explained how tickets for their sold out show at Sheffield’s Motorpoint Arena last October were originally sold at face value from £43.45 to £71.50.

However, they are now being sold on by touts on ticket marketing websites for between £125 and £142.

Mr Dugher called on the government to introduce proposals to prevent the bulk-purchase of thousands of sports and music tickets the moment they are available online.

He voted in favour of the proposals in the House of Commons this month but these were defeated by the government.

Mr Dugher said: “As a keen sports and music fan myself, I’m sure people in Barnsley will be very disappointed that the government has ruled out action to tackle ticket touting.

“It is incredibly frustrating for fans to be unable to buy tickets to see their favourite events when they go on sale and then have to pay massively inflated prices if they still wish to go.”

The vote followed an open letter to the government from prominent bands and figures in the music and sports sectors, including South Yorkshire band Arctic Monkeys, calling for action against ticket touts.

The letter called for inclusion of a clause in the consumer rights bill that would require online ticket touts to publish a ticket’s face value, seller’s name and whether or not it is permitted for resale.

But the government argued that increased regulation would require buyers to jump through too many hoops before buying a secondary ticket.