By Sarah Walters and Neal Keeling, © 2011 Manchester Evening News
James star in death threats ordeal
“Stalker told me: I’ll kick your wobbly head in”
- James singer reveals email and poster taunts
- Police informed as band perform city gigs
JAMES star Tim Booth has spoken of his ordeal at the hands of a stalker who has threatened to kill him. Police were alerted after posters went up in Manchester saying the singer would be attacked.
Booth, 51, revealed he was being targeted during a James concert at the Bridgewater Hall – after security had been stepped up as a direct result of the threats. The posters appeared ahead of the band’s two concerts at the Manchester venue on Monday and last night. Booth, who joined James while he was a Manchester University student in the 1980s, told the M.E.N: “I’ve been getting some strange emails from someone for about a year-and-a-half that have been getting weirder and weirder, which could be from the same person [as put up the posters] but we don’t know.
”The posters were put up over James posters at the Bridgewater Hall and someone was also handing out fly-posters.
“Someone’s gone to a bit of effort. They detail what they’re going to do to me when they get hold of me.
“It wasn’t a problem for me. I go walk-about in the audience and so that was a bit difficult. I felt it better to announce it to the audience and also if anyone sees someone handing posters out to report it to the police. We have told the police. We reported it here and in Nottingham – you have to report it in the place you’re in. Originally that was Nottingham.
“I’m assuming they’re going to be at one of the shows, that’s why I’m talking to the audience. In Liverpool, people were coming on stage and were grabbing me and security get really nervous obviously. I just felt like I was going to come out and make light of it as well, just inform the audience so they know what’s going on. I’m hoping we can flush him out at a show because he’ll be in an environment where I can deal with him.”
Security staff set up tables outside the Bridgewater Hall to check fans’ bags.
The box office was also screened off from the main foyer so no one could enter without going through security checks.
Security staff were also inside the hall during the show.
Four songs into Monday’s show, Booth produced an A3 poster, handwritten in black ink. He said a stalker was threatening to ‘kick his wobbly head in’ before joking that if he wandered into the audience everyone he approached should put their hands in the air to prove they weren’t ‘concealing any weapons’.
Then he said: “Seriously, if anyone sees anyone putting up the posters, I’d appreciate it if you’d contact the police.”
Yesterday Booth and the rest of the band unveiled a plaque to commemorate their first gig at the Hacienda club in Manchester 30 years ago.