He is one of the world’s most sought-after pop stars and sparks pandemonium wherever he travels. But down-to-earth One Direction star Liam Payne proved he is still a Wolverhampton boy at heart as he milled around shops at the city’s Wulfrun Centre virtually unnoticed.
Liam’s unexpected return to the city came as it emerged globe-conquering One Direction are to have a song covered in hit TV show Glee. The band’s first single What Makes You Beautiful will now feature in Thursday’s prom-themed episode on Sky One.
Liam, 18, from Bushbury, was spotted in the Wulfrun Centre yesterday morning.
Completely alone with not a bodyguard in sight, he walked through the complex unnoticed – until he was spotted by eagle-eyed Claire Peake. The 30-year-old businesswoman, of Hurst Road, Hurst Hill, said: “I passed him as he was walking past the Baker’s Oven.
“I did a double-take and walked back around the centre to get another look.
“I just went up to him and said, ‘Excuse me, are you from One Direction?’. He smiled and said he was and introduced himself as Liam.
“He was lovely, so nice and polite. When my partner Alan asked for a picture, he did not hestitate. He was really friendly.”
She added: “It’s strange to think he is in this huge band because he was just walking around Wolverhampton like a normal lad.”
As well as huge success in this country, former St Peter’s Collegiate student Liam and his One Direction bandmates recently made history as the first UK pop group to debut at number one on America’s Billboard album chart.
Up All Night went straight into the top spot on the 200-album chart, an achievement that outperforms the likes of The Beatles and Coldplay.
And it is expected that the cover on Glee will further boost their record sales across the pond.
Glee star Matthew Morrison, who plays teacher Will Schuester, said: “I’ve just heard of them, they’re really taking over the States.”