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Teary Westlife fans react to McFadden's departure
Fans in Dublin today expressed sadness that McFadden's departure comes so soon before the Westlife tour. Photos by Cathal Dawson.
The Hot Press Newsdesk, 09 Mar 2004
Westlife fans across the globe are lamenting the loss of Bryan McFadden who today announced that he is quitting the band to devote more time to his family.
In Dublin, a crowd of about twenty female fans had gathered outside the Four Seasons Hotel where the press conference began at 1pm. The tears began flowing upon confirmation of Bryan's decision to leave Westlife.
Speaking to hotpress.com, Westlife fan Angie Tomkins (pictured below) was visibly distraught: "There's been loads of rumours but you never believe any of them 'cause they're like a strong band. You'd never think that any of them would leave."
The twenty-two year old Liverpudlian fan explained that she had bought tickets to Dublin when she heard whispers that Bryan might be leaving.
"He's my favourite and I thought I'd never see him again," she said with tears streaming down her face. "When I found out that he's not gonna be on the tour I thought 'I have to come, just to see if I can get a glimpse of him'. So now I probably won't see him again. He's got his family now. It's sad but I wish him good luck."
Beside Angie, who was consoled by her mother, a group of schoolgirls (pictured at top) were also shedding tears.
Sixteen year-old Grace Moore was dubious of the announcement: "They're gonna keep going on - well so that say - but that's what Take That said."
Her friend, Stacey Caffrey, felt that Westlife fans the world over were being cheated: "It's gonna make the biggest difference," she said. "Brian was the loud one and all and now that he's not going to the concerts it's not fair on loads of people. I think it's bad for the fans in a way, they could have waited till after the concert. I feel a bit of robbery."
In the press conference earlier, Nicky responded to the impending claims that 'Westlife would not be the same without Bryan'.
"Obviously that goes without saying," he said. "The band is not going to be the same without any one of us. We look at a lot of the press today and it's all 'Westlife is at the end' and stuff like that. We're still a band and we feel we have a lot of unfinished work to do.
Kian spoke about the upcoming Westlife tour: "It's going to be weird. I think for the four of us to stand on stage, as a four-piece, I think emotionally is gonna be quite hard. We're going to get up there to prove that we can do it. We're gonna put so much time, so much effort into this tour, that for anyone who's ever seen a Westlife tour this is going to be the best one."
Nicky pleaded for their fans' continued support: "If you look at Spice Girls, Take That, you know it didn’t last but we're here to tell everybody that we want it to last, and unfortunately it's not in the hands of us. It’s in the hands of all of our fans and at the moment we would just hope that all of our fans stay with us, 'cause we need their support more than ever. Forget number ones, forget everything else, we need their support right now, and so does Bryan.
"The media can't decide whether were going to stay around or not we will follow through with our upcoming tour and we'll work from that."
Later, speaking to hotpress.com, a teary Stacey Caffrey was asked if she would be attending any of the seven Dublin shows "I was meant to be going to the show but I'm not going now."