Busted rock fans in Ipswich

AFTER months of waiting Suffolk has finally welcomed home its very own prince of pop in spectacular style.In a night that will be remembered forever by thousands of fans, Ipswich's Christchurch park played host to Charlie Simpson and his Busted bandmates.

AFTER months of waiting Suffolk has finally welcomed home its very own prince of pop in spectacular style.

In a night that will be remembered forever by thousands of fans, Ipswich's Christchurch park played host to Charlie Simpson and his Busted bandmates.

And what a homecoming it was.

Around 15,000 fans of all ages gathered in the evening sunshine for a night of pure pop partying.

Performances from a string of up and coming bands including V, Tommi and Fifth Avenue kicked off the evening, but were outshone by McFly who played a selection of hits from their number one album.

Proceedings began at a fairly leisurely pace with families scattered across the hill enjoying picnics in the warm weather.

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After a damp and drizzly day it seemed that even the sun had turned out to welcome Charlie back to the county.

By the time the Busted boys arrived on stage Ipswich was well and truly ready to rock and as Charlie Simpson appeared as a lone figure engulfed by smoke he was greeted with deafening cheers.

A high-energy rendition of Air Hostess kicked off the proceedings, whipping the crowd into a frenzy.

"This is a very special night for me" screamed Charlie, "This is my home-town. Hello Ipswich!"

Dressed in their trademark low-slung jeans and t-shirts the band pogo-ed, ran and leaped around the stage. And at one point Matt's trousers appeared so perilously low it looked as though the fans may get to see more of him than they had imagined.

Belting out all of their number one hits and favourites from both albums the band proved exactly why they have won the hearts of the country.

New single Thunderbirds Are Go and their cover of Teenage Kicks, first aired at the Brits, also proved particular favourites with the crowd.

As the sun went down on the concert bowl, dazzling pyrotechnics lit up the stage and it became clear the night was drawing to an end.

After more than an hour of hits, the boys took a short break before returning for a finale of Year 3000, a sing-along Sleeping With The Light On and Crashed The Wedding.

Friday July 16 2004 will go down in history, not just in the diaries of thousands of teenage fans, but as the night that Suffolk proved it's worth as a venue for top chart acts, by giving its very own pop royalty a welcome fit for a king.

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