‘He is very special’ - Gary Barlow fan Sue Smith from Ely snaps selfies after 5,000 tweets to meet the popstar
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Gary Barlow fanatic Sue Smith from Ely has proved how deep her love is for the singer by snapping selfies with him after sending 5,000 tweets.
Childminder Sue, 54, began her Twitter campaign to meet the Take That pop star in 2014.
Since then Sue has met Gary about 11 times and has got his autograph tattooed on her right wrist.
Gary has even been there to support Sue through her knee operation and charity work in Ely.
"I sent 5,000 tweets to him and then he messaged and said he promised that somehow we would meet," Sue said.
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"I screamed and cried and I thought this is not happening to me.
"He was such a tease; I never knew I was going to meet him right up until the day in 2015.
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"We had exchanged 13 DM's before we actually met - he said 'Sue you're completely nuts and I love it'.
The mum-of-two says her love of Take That began when she married her teenage sweetheart, Graham, in 1989 - the same year the band got together.
"I loved Gary from the beginning," she said.
"He was shy and felt like the odd one out and I felt I could relate to him as his values are echoed in what I do.
"When they reformed in 2005 I became an even bigger fan and joined the GB Army fan group 'Thatters' and met one of my close friends Judy."
When Gary started a Twitter campaign in 2014 to meet brides and perform at their weddings; Sue decided to try and get him to her 50th birthday party at Ely City Golf Club.
The hashtag #getgarytosues50th caused a stir, but it wasn't until a year later that she met the main man himself at a Take That gig at the O2.
She has also been exclusively invited to a podcast Gary organised at the Apple store in Covent Garden.
"Every time I see him I'm totally at ease with him. He is very special because he is so grounded.
"He doesn't big himself up and is usually quick to put himself down.
"He is exactly how you see him on TV and is very humble.
"He knows about my community work and asks about my children and all the fundraising I do for Children in Need too."
Sue even traced Gary to the hotel he was staying at after he performed at Thetford Forest last year.
"I was the only person there and then about 2.30pm he came out and gave me the biggest hug.
"I had a Sharpie pen and he signed my right wrist and I went straight to the tattoo shop in Littleport."
After Sue had her knee operation in January this year, Gary messaged asking how she was.
"I was worried about not being able to see them at one of the gigs but Gary said 'get better first and then come and see us', she said.
"He promised to get me a good seat."
Sue has made dozens of friends from around the world since teaming up with other fans.
"When we've waited for him outside after an interview with Radio 2 Sara Cox even bought us pizzas," she said.
"There was one time when I couldn't make it and Gary came out and asked where I was."
Sue says that husband Graham understands her love for Gary and enjoys the music.
Stacks of Gary and Take That memorabilia - including high heels with Gary's face on them - adorn Sue's house.
She even had her picture in a Take Tour programme.
"I would say to anyone who would like to meet one of their idols then just got for it and follow your desire.
"I was not worthy more than anyone else to meet him - it was just a bit of dedication and luck."