It is six o'clock on a Monday evening in London's West End, and the throng of homeward-bound commuters is being hampered by an unlikely source. American R&B supergroup Destiny's Child are in town to launch their new album, Destiny Fulfilled, and so traffic grinds to a halt. They have been in London for five days now, making special appearances, parading themselves on telly and, whenever possible, visiting their favourite high-street outlet, Top Shop. Wherever they go, hordes of fans follow, a large minority of whom appear to be the kind that scream and cry and generally look ever so slightly deranged.
Right now, the ladies - Beyoncé Knowles, Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams - are doing an MTV interview in Leicester Square, and dispensing all the usual soundbites. "Yes," they tell the VJ, "they love London", and, "Yes, it's great being back together again after two years of solo projects." No, Beyoncé won't be discussing her boyfriend, the US megastar rapper Jay-Z, but she will say how much they are all looking forward to next year's world tour. The band smile, say thank you and then depart with a rarefied elegance. It's been a pleasure.