Man with weeks to live to get helicopter to Glastonbury Festival as 'dying wish'

Nigel Stonehouse, 58, was diagnosed with cancer of his kidney in mid-May Credit: PA Media

A man with incurable cancer is set to get a helicopter to Glastonbury Festival so he can experience it with his friends "one last time".

Nigel Stonehouse, 58, has just weeks to live after being diagnosed with cancer of the kidney in mid-May which has spread to his lungs.

Mr Stonehouse, who is from Hartlepool, had been due to go to Glastonbury this week but could not travel without medical help.

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

The group have now raised more than £13,000 to get the former bricklayer from North Tees hospital to the festival site by helicopter.

Between the hours of Sunday afternoon and Sunday evening, the fundraiser jumped from £9,000 to £12,000 from more than 800 donors.

Musician Fatboy Slim, who is performing at the Somerset festival this year, is among the donors and he has urged his followers to do likewise on social media.

Lizzie said: “Nigel is currently an inpatient at North Tees hospital, and their wonderful palliative care team have assured him that they will do all they can to make this happen.

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

“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.

Nigel Stonehouse had been due to go to Glastonbury this week Credit: Maria Beggs

“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.”

Mr Stonehouse, described as a “festival veteran”, has gone to Glastonbury with his friends for the past 30 years, and has seen the Rolling Stones, Johnny Cash and David Bowie perform there.

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

Maria Beggs said: “He’s feeling positive and it’s given him a boost and something positive to hope for.”

As the fundraiser hit and then surpassed its target on Sunday evening, Ms Beggs said Mr Stonehouse was “over the moon”.

Sharing the good news to Twitter with crying emojis and hearts, she wrote: “Nige just called, he’s over the moon 'we’ll get our Glastonbury family there’ is what he said. THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH! This is all so amazing.”