LONDON, July 14 /PRNewswire/ -- As fans prepare for the launch of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince at 00.01 on Saturday, 16th July, Waterstone's reveals that over 300,000 people are expected to queue at midnight openings across the UK to be amongst the first to own a copy of the latest Harry Potter book.
This figure may not surprise, as it is well known that the British love to queue but do we know how to queue properly? With this in mind Waterstone's has enlisted the help of Matt Roberts, Personal Trainer for the likes of Naomi Campbell and John Galliano, to come up with some handy hints for Harry Potter queue-ers.
Matt Roberts Guide to Queuing
- Stand in a neutral position: feet shoulder width apart, abdominal muscles slightly tensed and shoulders slightly back. Pelvis in the middle (not leaning to any side) and head straight with eyes straight ahead
- To stop you getting stiff and achy you need to mobilize your spine. Matt suggests the following stretches:
a. Lift alternate knees at right angles to your body
b. Clasp hands in front of your body and stretch away from your chest, rounding your shoulders
c. Clasp hands behind your back and stretch away from your body
- Tilt pelvis
- Lean on one leg
- Tilt your head
- Hunch shoulders
These positions all create tension within your back and can lead to back pain
The Biggest Potter Party in Britain will take place at Waterstone's 311 Oxford Street, London that will host a massive queue party featuring magical fun and games, mythical creatures, moving gargoyles, wizards, face painters and characters from the books including Hagrid and Professors Dumbledore, McGonagall and Snape.
The extravaganza starts at 6pm but fans should get there early for the opportunity to win many fabulous prizes. Those who arrive by 8pm can enter the sorting hat draw to join an exclusive VIP party taking place inside the branch.
Here lucky winners and their friends will mingle with celebrity guests, be entertained until midnight, receive a Waterstone's wizard reading library and a free copy of 'Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince' when Dumbledore reveals the book at midnight.
Waterstone's will also be opening 140 of its branches across the UK at midnight and predict that around 1/2 million books will be sold at midnight openings across the UK and, in total, 2 million copies will have been sold in the first 24 hours with at least 10 million worldwide being sold in the first 24 hours worldwide.
'Potter-ing' Things to Do While Queuing
As well as Matt's tips for queuing comfortably, Waterstone's has put together the following suggestions for topics of conversation, after all you will be surrounded by other fans so now is the time to discuss those all important Potter questions:
- Who is the Half-Blood Prince? - Will Hermione and Ron end up going out together? - Is Professor Snape really a goody or a baddy? - Who will be killed off in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince? - Which is the best Harry Potter book and why? - Which character would you most like to be and why? - Can you name all the main characters in the books in alphabetical order?
In a recent survey, commissioned by Waterstone's and carried out by the National Federation of Book Groups, seven out of ten children across the UK (69%) said that Harry Potter books were their favourite books of all time. Other than those that voted for all of the Harry Potter books, the children ranked their favourite individual Harry Potter books:
1 Goblet of Fire
2 Order of the Phoenix
3 Prisoner of Azkaban
4 Chamber of Secrets
5 Philosophers Stone
John Webb, Children's Buyer at Waterstone's, believes the reason may be to do with romance, "It is in 'Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire' that the first signs of romance begin to blossom around the Quidditch World Cup, and this probably appeals to girls and boys alike. The ranking also suggests that children are enjoying the fact that the content of the Harry Potter books is becoming darker as the series progresses."
The survey also revealed that the most popular character that children would most like to be was Hermione Granger (41%), with Harry Potter (19%) and Ron Weasley (13%) sharing the male vote. Not surprisingly 82% of children would like their school to be more like Hogwart's School of Wizardry - the teacher that children would most like at their school was Hagrid (35%), followed by Professor Dumbledore (33%) and Professor Snape (10%).
John Webb comments, "Again, this is not as surprising as it may first seem. Hagrid has always been a friend first and someone that Harry, Hermione and Ron can depend on and trust. In the books, Hagrid's Care of Magical Creatures lessons are definitely the most fun (albeit the most dangerous), and I think children would enjoy them far more than a dull hour of Divination with Professor Trelawney!"
- The first English recording of the word queue was in 1837
- It is estimated that British people spend about one year of their lives standing in queues
- Scientists have proven that when you have nothing to do or so-called 'empty time' time seems to stretch out. E.g. Studies show that each minute travelling on the bus lasts as long as two or three minutes in the queue
- The French word queue from which the English word is borrowed is a descendant of Latin coda, meaning "tail."
- The queue to see Pope John Paul II's body outside St. Peter's Basilica in Rome on 18 April 2005 stretched for 5 miles.
- In 2003 The BBC described the wait to get to base camp as part joined the Everest expedition to retrace the footsteps of the 1953 British expedition as the highest queue in the world
- US Star Wars fans famously queued for four months at the wrong cinema for the premier of 'Episode III: Return of the Sith'
Notes to Editors
Public Enquiries: Waterstone's 311 Oxford Street 0207 4996100
Pictures of Matt Roberts: Pictures of Matt Roberts demonstrating the Dos and Don'ts of successful queuing are available
The UK's best-known personal trainer, Matt Robert's began his career in fitness as an international sprinter before studying with the American Council for Exercise and the American College of Sports Medicine.
In 1994 he opened Matt Roberts Personal Training in London's Mayfair. Its phenomenal success was followed by another two London gyms and a spa in Mauritius; he is soon to open spas in the Maldives and the Seychelles.
Elle magazine wrote: "Matt Roberts, personal trainer to the likes of John Galliano and Madonna, is probably his own best advertisement". Other celebrities who have trained with Matt Roberts include Sandra Bullock, Naomi Campbell, Mel C, Sting and Trudie Styler, Faye Dunaway, Charles Worthington, John Galliano and Gucci's Tom Ford
Matt has a number of books including 'Fit for Your Shape' (Dorling Kindersley, January 8, 2004) 'Six-pack Abs' (Dorling Kindersley, May 1, 2003) and 'Fitness for Life', (Dorling Kindersley - January 1, 2002),
SOURCE Waterstone's Booksellers Ltd