Chieftains founder Martin Fay dies aged 76

image captionMartin Fay retired from the Chieftains in 2002

The fiddle player Martin Fay, a founding member of the Chieftains traditional music group, has died at the age of 76.

Mr Fay, who was from Cabra in Dublin, had been ill for some time.

He was one of the original members of the group formed by piper Paddy Maloney in 1962, although the musicians only played together full-time from 1975.

He stopped touring with the group in 2001, making only occasional appearances until retiring in 2002.

In a statement the group said: "Martin's memory and music will be with the Chieftains always.

"He will be dearly missed."

Mr Fay's first love was classical music and he began taking music lessons after viewing a film on the great violinist Paganini.

He later switched to Irish traditional music and joined Paddy Maloney, Sean Potts and Michael Tubridy in the original Chieftains line-up