Greg Gilbert lead singer of Delays dies aged 44

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Greg GilbertImage source, PA Media
Image caption,
Greg Gilbert was diagnosed with stage four bowel cancer in 2016

Greg Gilbert - the lead singer of indie band Delays - has died from cancer aged 44.

His wife Stacey Heale made an announcement on social media, saying he had "gently slipped away into the stars".

Fans and fellow musicians rallied to help Mr Gilbert when he was diagnosed with stage four bowel cancer in 2016.

In August it was announced he had been taken off treatment and was receiving pain relief at a hospice.

Greg's brother Aaron, who plays keyboards in the band, said in a statement on social media "he was my brother and best friend".

Image source, Family photo
Image caption,
Greg Gilbert and his wife Stacey Heale - pictured in an old family photo - have two daughters, Dali and Bay

He added: "Greg died surrounded in the endless love that us and all of you have given him on this journey, and we will never be able to fully express how much it meant to him and all of us to have you by our side lifting us up like a winged army.

"Your messages, your encouragement and your compassion have been our oxygen for the last five years.

"Thank you for sharing our grief, and for making it easier to carry at times while you were firefighting battles of your own, and thank you for making Greg such a special person in your lives. I'm so glad we all existed at the same time."

After the NHS had said it could only offer further chemotherapy, a crowdfunding appeal launched by his wife called Give4Greg raised more than £215k for alternative treatment, doubling its initial target in 48 hours.

Image source, unknown
Image caption,
Delays had a number of chart hits

Formed in Southampton in 2001 and originally called Corky, Delays have released four albums to date including their well-received debut Faded Seaside Glamour.

The band originally consisted of Gilbert, drummer Rowly, bassist Colin Fox and guitarist Dan Hall, who left before Gilbert's brother Aaron was invited to join.

Throughout his illness, Gilbert documented his illness and treatment on social media through poetry and art.

The miniature, photorealistic biro sketches he created following his diagnosis were displayed at Southampton City Art Gallery in 2019, to complement its show Leonardo da Vinci: A Life in Drawing.

Ms Heale said: "Greg was an extraordinary human - not of this world, I'm sure of that.

"His wonder at the world and creativity is something I've never seen in anyone else."

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