Friends raise funds to get festival-lover with weeks left to live to Glastonbury by helicopter

Friends of a festival-lover who has been told he has weeks left to live are fundraising to fly him from hospital to Glastonbury festival.

Nigel Stonehouse, 58, a former bricklayer from Hartlepool, has gone to the festival with friends for the past 30 years.

He was diagnosed with cancer of the kidney in mid-May which has spread to his lungs, with doctors telling him it is incurable.

He had been due to go to Glastonbury this week but could not travel without medical help, so his friends started a fundraiser to pay for a helicopter to fly him there from North Tees hospital.

Mr Stonehouse’s close friend, Lizzie Beggs, said it was his “dying wish” to be with all of his friends at Glastonbury “even if only for a few hours for one last time”.

He is an inpatient at North Tees hospital and staff have assured him that they will do all they can to make this happen, she said.

Ms Beggs added: “Within hours they had contacted site managers at the festival who advised that they would facilitate in ways that they can.

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“Unfortunately there is no space left in the accessible areas (Nige has a general sale ticket) but they will facilitate entry via the accessible car park.

“This is obviously a huge undertaking, and will be costly, the palliative care team suggested commissioning a helicopter – the first quote we have had is for £12,000.”

By Sunday evening the fundraiser had hit its £12,000 target and continued to climb, exceeding £15,000 by Monday afternoon.

Alongside donors, the campaign has been supported by stars too.

Musician Fatboy Slim, who is performing at the Somerset festival this year, is among those backing the cause and urging his followers to do likewise on social media.

Mr Stonehouse’s friends say he is “very stubborn and determined” despite his condition and looks forward to watching Diana Ross this year.

You can donate to Mr Stonehouse’s fundraiser here

Source : Sky News