Please come back plea to Elton

Chris HillAfter watching 15,000 Elton John fans rocking on his lawn, the owner of Holkham Hall said he hoped to entice an equally legendary artist to the estate next year.Chris Hill

After watching 15,000 Elton John fans rocking on his lawn, the owner of Holkham Hall said he hoped to entice an equally legendary artist to the estate next year.

The crowd which descended on the Earl of Leicester's family home on Sunday was at least double the size pulled in by previous acts including Girls Aloud, Status Quo and Jools Holland.

Last night, technical crews continued the job of dismantling the massive stage, sound and lighting rigs which helped Sir Elton deliver his bravura performance.

And following the success of the event, Viscount Coke said the search would begin for a performer matching the Rockets Man's iconic status to play in 2010.

'Elton John delivered a high level of entertainment for the audience on Sunday evening, playing recognised numbers from the many albums he has produced over the years,' he said.

'With a high number of tickets sold, it is a good financial outcome for the concert promoters and Holkham.

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'In terms of next year we all know that Elton John will be a very hard act to follow but we will be looking to see who we can bring to Norfolk to match both the stature and delivery we had this year.

'We will be aiming for quality before volume when planning the 2010 concert.'

Lord Coke said the glorious sunshine affected the fortunes of the show, with many staying to enjoy their picnic long after the music had finished.

And his point was proved yesterday by the potentially disastrous thunderstorms which soaked Holkham and forced a power cut less than 24 hours after Sir Elton took the stage.

Sunday's unprecedented audience did bring some problems, with many drivers queuing for more than an hour to get home after the concert.

Estates director David Horton-Fawkes said: 'There are lessons to be learned every time and we are certainly not taking anything for granted.

'It is inevitable with this number of people exiting in such a short time there will be some delays - it is just about minimising it.'

But there was no such trouble for Sir Elton, who waved to the departing crowds from a helicopter while making a superstar's exit from Holkham after his two-and-a-half hour show.

Mr Horton-Fawkes said: 'I thought Elton was a real professional. I have seen a lot of these concerts and it is very rare to see a performer give so much energy.'

For video footage and interviews from Sunday's Elton John concert, visit www.edp24.co.uk/content/ edp24/news/video.