Rod's fans still devoted after 30 years

THERE were 11,000 mad keen Rod Stewart fans packed into Sheffield Arena this week, but few could boast of being more devoted than Kim and Diane Tinkler.

The dedicated Maltby sisters have clocked up more than 100 gigs together over the past 30 years—and the novelty still hasn’t worn off.

“I love him as much as I always have,” said Kim (51), who snapped up tickets to Tuesday night’s show as soon as they went on sale.

“I can’t explain why—there’s just something about him. Hearing him sing those songs live brings back memories of different times in my life.”

Diane (46) added: “I just love him and love his music. He might be 65 but I think he’s gorgeous.

“My friends say he will come on stage on a zimmer frame but I think they’re just jealous.”

Diane and Kim dressed up for Tuesday’s concert—Rod’s first at the Arena for five years—in matching Celtic football shirts with “Rod” and “Stewart” respectively on the back.

Kim’s memorabilia also includes a treasured Foolish Behaviour T-shirt, which she is proud that she can still fit into 30 years after the album was released, a framed photo, signed drumsticks and two signed footballs.

But despite her devotion over the years and various attempts to catch a glimpse of the former Faces frontman off-stage, Kim, of Armstrong Walk, has still never met her hero.

She came close at her first Faces concert aged 16 when she fainted in the crowd at Sheffield City Hall and was taken backstage for treatment but still missed out on getting up close and personal with the heartthrob as he was still on stage.

The sisters, who both name You Wear It Well as their favourite song, paid £75 each for their tickets to Tuesday’s show and reckon they have spent well into five figures following Rod across the UK and even to Paris.

Kim added: “I get sleepless nights and I’m in a state all day.

“He was as good as ever this time around. His voice sounded really good and he did a lot of Motown and soul.

“It’s the highlight of my year when I get to see him—it’s even better than my birthday.”