POP hopeful Zoe Birkett could miss out on chart success because shops in her home town have run out of copies of her debut single.

Zoe's record Treat Me Like A Lady was released on Monday and fans in Darlington rushed to buy it.

But 24 hours after it was released, Zoe's single had sold out in shops throughout the region.

Early chart predictions suggest Zoe will enter the charts on Sunday at number 16 - the lowest any Pop Idol contestant has charted so far.

But yesterday, her fans claimed Zoe's chart position will be affected by the fact that they are unable get their hands on a copy of the single.

Kay Former, from Consett, County Durham, said: "I have tried to get the single in Darlington and Consett and can't find it anywhere.

"My daughter is a really big fan of Zoe's and she really wanted the single, but I can't find it.

"A few of my friends have had the same problem. Shops just haven't ordered enough copies.

"If she doesn't do very well it won't be because we haven't supported her."

Shops in Darlington, Barnard Castle, Bishop Auckland and Consett have recorded a huge demand for the single.

It has been made single of the week by HMV in Darlington and is selling better than the debut single by Fame Academy winner David Sneddon, which is tipped to take the number one spot on Sunday.

But Zoe's fans are convinced she could give all her rivals a run for their money if only they could buy the single.

One fan, from Barnard Castle, said she had been unable to find the single in Woolworths' stores in the town or Bishop Auckland.

She said: "I wanted to buy a few copies because my friends have asked me to get them but couldn't find any.

"I think people up here are quite prepared to support Zoe, but the single has to be there to buy in the first place."

A spokesman for Woolworths said the single had sold out in towns across the North-East.

He said: "She is a local girl and that is why there is so much demand.

"There are more copies on order for today and there will be even more in the shops later in the week."