Campaign for Pete rolls on one year later

The campaign for a permanent memorial to a borough musical legend is going from strength to strength a year after his death.

Punk star Pete Shelley, a key member of the band Buzzcocks, died aged just 63 exactly 12 months ago today.

In that time the Pete Shelley Memorial Campaign has raised more than £6,000 for a tribute statue to the musician in his home town of Leigh.

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And the campaigning will be continuing in the new year both for the memorial to Pete and to provide a legacy for music and culture in the town.

Music fans can see part of the efforts to remember Pete in the exhibition Understated, currently being held at The Turnpike in Leigh, as it contains a blue plaque.

The disc has been organised by Wigan Council and contains some appropriate words chosen by the memorial campaign.

This will then go on display in Leigh at a location yet to be confirmed by the town hall after the exhibition comes to an end on December 14.

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Alison Mckenzie-Folan, chief executive of the council, said: “Pete was one of the UK’s most influential musicians and we’re proud to honour his memory with this plaque in his hometown of Leigh. If you haven’t been to see the fantastic Turnpike exhibition yet, I’d recommend it.”

As well as the statue which it began campaigning for the group wants to help a new generation of Leythers explore their creativity.

Paul Lally from the campaign said: “We are now exploring registering as an official charity so long-term funds can be raised to benefit music and the arts within the community locally.

“This is something we believe Pete would have been proud to be associated with.

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“Before the exhibition opened his widow Greta said he would have loved this.”

The campaign’s next fund-raising gig is on February 15 at St Joseph’s Hall, named Ever Fallen In Love after Buzzcocks’ biggest hit.

The Drones, The Distractions, Fast Cars, Notsensibles and Benefit State, who are all bands known to Pete and originating at a similar time to Buzzcocks, will all perform.

The last fund-raising gig in November brought in £1,700, with Same as it ever woz, Ontick and Buzzkoks performing for a sold-out audience at The Turnpike.

There was also a lovely moment when eight-year-old Emily Hamilton, a member of Pete’s family, sang with Buzzkoks on stage.

Tickets for the February gig are available on Eventbrite.

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