And there's a pretty picture of some confetti.
As you can see, I was in a pretty good spot at the end of the walkway, however, to my surprise, gaining this position wasn't down to waiting for hours and hours in the freezing cold. Even if you arrive a little later than others, say, 15 minutes after the doors open, it is still perfectly possible to get a good position, if you play your cards right.
1. Try and look as young as possible. For me, wearing glasses and tucking my hair behind my ears allowed me to play the part of the vulnerable teen girl. Yes, it did make me more of a target for rapists. But, when attempting to make my way through the crowd by sweetly saying "sorry, excuse me", I was faced with less aggression than say, the loud middle aged woman with sun-transition glasses.
2. Always attack the crowd from the side. People will not move if you try and work your way up to the front. Go for the side and squeeze through the gaps in a line. Move swiftly and efficiently.
3. Talk very loudly on your mobile phone. People will be glad to let you through to stop the verbal diarrhea.
4. Pretend you are looking for someone "over there". For me and my troops, we actually WERE looking for a few friends, and had the advantage of being able to see and wave to each other, making our case for moving forward in the crowd valid. If in doubt, combine steps 2, 3 and 4 and move through the crowd talking to whoever you are trying to find very loudly on your phone. This triple-point tactic is always a winner.
5. Once you have your prime spot, stay rooted. Don't let someone purposely breathing very heavily on your right shoulder make you move. This happened to me, it was not pleasant.
Bear in mind, these tactics will not guarantee you a place right at the front, but a good place all the same. Also, if you are in a crowd, make sure you are hydrated. Last night, I was a keen bean and refrained from drinking fluids so that a toilet break would not be necessary. I ended up almost fainting at the beginning of Charlie Brown. I would like to clarify this was not because I am an insane fan and was overcome with emotion. STAY HYDRATED.