Friends of a terminally ill man have launched a fundraiser to help him attend the Glastonbury Festival next week.
Nigel Stonehouse, 58, of Hartlepool, was recently diagnosed with kidney cancer that has now spread to his lungs. After he was diagnosed with the disease, his friends wanted to fulfill his “last wish” to visit the festival for the last time.
Dubbed a “festival veteran” by his friends, the former Mason has been to Glastonbury for 30 years and has seen major titles like the Rolling Stones, David Bowie and Johnny Cash.
He was due to go there this week but couldn’t travel any longer without medical help, so friends started fundraising to pay for a helicopter to take him there from North Tees Hospital.
Speaking to the Palestinian News Agency, Maria Biggs, one of the fundraising campaign organizers, said Stonehouse felt “positive” and that the support “gave him a boost and something to hope for.” She said he is “very tenacious and assertive” and is looking forward to seeing Diana Ross at this year’s event.
Another organizer, Lizzie Bigs, wrote on the fundraising page, “He was assured by his wonderful palliative care team that they would do whatever it took to make this happen.”
These efforts have already raised £9,000 from more than 500 donations to the cost of £12,000 to rent a helicopter. Supporters, including DJ Fatboy Slim, who plays at this year’s festival, shared their fundraising page on Twitter.
While they hope to “move heaven and earth” to get Stonehouse to Glastonbury, even if “for only a few hours”, his friends realize that his condition could get worse even if the fundraising goal is achieved, which means it can be uncomfortable sharing. “In this case, the funds will be donated to Glastonbury charities,” the fundraising page says.