The Wimbledon Queue
There is nothing as quintessentially British as queuing.
It's not surprising then that Wimbledon is one of the only sporting events in the world for which you can queue to get tickets.
But you'd be mistaken if you thought that the Wimbledon queue was similar to a normal queue.
No at Wimbledon queuing is taken to the extreme.
Queue cards are issued, stewards patrol and tents and sleeping bags are necessities.
Last year Tabitha and I had naively rocked up at 9am the day before and had been in the mid 600s in the queue, just scraping Centre Court tickets thanks to a certain Swiss star playing on Court 1. So we realised we needed to be earlier next time.
This year we left home on Monday afternoon and spent the evening with a family friend in London. At 5am on Tuesday morning we got an Uber across to SW19. When we arrived we were met with a sea of tents and were told that the majority would be staying to get tickets for the men's quarter finals rather than packing up to go to the women's and we'd therefore probably be getting Court. 1 tickets.
As those who are close to us will know Tabitha and I are ridiculously optimistic people. So we kept our fingers crossed for Centre Court and set up our tent.
Finally after 10 hours in the queue we were issued with our queue cards which told us that our early morning get up had paid off and we were 406 and 407 in the queue. Even more exciting when we found out that both Federer and Murray would be on Centre.
We still had around 20 hours left till we'd actually get in to Wimbeldon. So we ordered a pizza and watched a make-shift doubles tennis match being played by some of our neighbours.
The next morning 24hrs after we'd arrived, we packed up our tent and moved up into a standing queue along the golf course where we got given our Centre Court wristbands
Finally after almost 30 hours queuing we made it into Wimbledon.
We spent some time watching the junior matches taking place on the outside courts
Before heading inside for the main matches of the day.
First up was Federer vs Cilic, followed by Murray vs Tsonga.
I won't bother telling you the details, you probably all know how they both went.
What I will say, was that both matches had to be some of the most exciting tennis I've ever watched.
How Federer managed to come back from 2 sets down, I will never know. And the force with which Tsonga was able to return Murray's serves was ridiculous.
On the celeb front, we were joined by
- Aidan Turner (Poldark),
- Matthew Macfadyn, (Ripper Street/Mr Darcy)
- Keeley Hawes (Ashes to Ashes)
- Stanley Tucci (Devil Wears Prada)
- Ellie Goulding
- Bear Grylls
- David Beckham
Pretty good going?! (Although, Cate Blanchett sitting next to us on our train home probably pipped it)
Once again had an amazing time queuing for Wimbledon, met some fun people on the way and got to see some incredible tennis.
Maybe see you in the queue next year?