Thousands of tennis fans who waited for up to 48 hours for Wimbledon tickets were braced for further queues today amid a heightened security operation.
Almost 7,000 people were in the queue this morning hoping to get their hands on grounds tickets for the tournament.
Some arrived as early as the small hours of Saturday morning to get a prime place in the queue for the tournament, which will see Andy Murray defending the title he won last year.
People were packing up their belongings this morning at the makeshift camp site as the gates opened at the All England Club for the start of Wimbledon 2017.
Security: Barriers in place outside Wimbledon Tennis Club to protect pedestrians (NIGEL HOWARD)
First in line was Des Robson, from Northumberland, who arrived at 1.30am on Saturday.
The computer technician said: “I drew up a bucket list after having two heart attacks two years ago and getting on Centre Court at Wimbledon is top of the list.”
Keen: First in line was Des Robson, from Northumberland (Alex Lentati)
This year’s tournament is going ahead with a heightened security operation in the wake of recent terror attacks in the UK.
Anti-vehicle security barriers can be seen at the gates of the grounds and both uniformed and plainclothes officers are set to be deployed throughout the two-week event.
Queue: Ticket hunters camp out close to the Wimbledon Tennis Club hoping get tickets (NIGEL HOWARD)
Primary school teacher Lorraine Percy, 28, left Poole in Dorset at 3.30am to join the line with two friends from her tennis club.
She said: “The security has been increased very obviously. It took hours to get through the checks this morning but I think it’s needed after what happened in London Bridge.
Wimbledon: The Met have put into place a ‘robust’ security plan (NIGEL HOWARD)
“The cement barriers are really important and everyone has been very organised.
“I wanted to see Federer but he’s on tomorrow and you can only have one day off work. He’s a total magician.
Queue: Enthusiastic tennis fans camped overnight
“To be here now and soak up the atmosphere. It’s amazing round here like a mini Glastonbury.”
And Amy Tregidgo, 31, was celebrating her tenth time camping out for early tickets but the first with her new boyfriend Michael Guy.
Queue: Tents pitched up on Sunday night by those hoping to get tickets into the grounds (Getty Images)
She said: “Every time the first day throws up these incredible moments whether it’s a wildcard making a name for themselves or a top seed crashing out.
“The players you don’t know play out of their skins because it’s Wimbledon. I just can’t see why I won’t come to camp out every time until I die.
Tournament: Thousands were waiting first thing this morning to gain entry to the grounds (PA)
“Everyone is doubting Murray a bit after the injury but I think he’s perfectly capable of getting to the final.
“I use to rock up at 11am and get a centre court ticket no problem but its getting busier and busier. I’m sure people will start camping on a Saturday soon.”
The Met revealed it had been working with the All England Lawn Tennis Club throughout the year to draw up a “robust” security plan for the world-famous tournament.
Superintendent Jo Edwards explains Wimbledon security measures
Superintendent Jo Edwards, the Met officer in charge of security, told the Standard “a significant number of officers from a range of different specialisms”, including firearms officers, were being deployed.
“Hundreds of thousands of people descend on this corner of south-west London each year and have a great time at the championships — that is exactly what we want this year,” she added.
“What we have to do is take into account the methodology that’s been used at recent attacks by attackers and we have got to make sure we have measures in place to mitigate against the differing types of attack.”