Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Delays star Greg Gilbert cancer fundraising gig held in Southampton

Audience at Joiners fundraising gig Image copyright Jesse Lawrence
Image caption The event at The Joiners was the first of four fundraisers for the singer

An "overwhelming" fundraising concert held to help pay for cancer treatment for the lead singer of indie band Delays has taken place.

When father-of-two Greg Gilbert, 39, from Southampton, was diagnosed with stage four bowel cancer, thousands rallied to support him.

So far £132,000 has been raised by family and fans for treatment not available to him on the NHS.

The first of four fundraising gigs was held at The Joiners in Southampton.

Joiners manager Pat Muldowney said Mr Gilbert was "one of the family" at the St Mary's venue and all artists and staff gave their services for nothing to stage the gig on Thursday night, which raised almost £2,000.

Image copyright Jesse Lawrence
Image caption Sean McGowan was among the performers at the fundraising gig

It comes after Mr Gilbert's fiancée Stacey Heale set up a crowdfunding appeal shortly before Christmas that reached its target of £100,000 in 48 hours.

GoFundMe said the appeal was one of the "fastest ever" campaigns on its site and it received support from music stars including Craig David and Ellie Goulding.

Miss Heale said the couple "deeply appreciate" the fundraising and although Mr Gilbert was not well enough to attend the gig she said he was "amazed" by the support.

"It was an amazing night. I went along with the rest of the guys from the band and we were overwhelmed by the amount of people who came together," she said.

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Media captionDelays singer Greg Gilbert on cancer diagnosis

Delays were formed in Southampton in 2001 by brothers Greg and Aaron Gilbert with Colin Fox and Rowly and became popular on the indie rock scene while performing at venues across the city.

Mr Gilbert is currently receiving chemotherapy and his family are researching potential treatments available abroad, which they hope the money raised will pay for.

Miss Heale added: "We have been blown away by everything people are doing. This is money to save Greg's life, and it's going to be a very hard journey for all of us."

Fans and friends are now organising three other gigs to be held in Hampshire during February as well as a potential auction of rock memorabilia this year.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Greg Gilbert has been diagnosed with stage four bowel cancer

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