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Windscreen drama caused Happy Mondays' cancellation of first Big Day Out gig...

Further news has emerged about the HAPPY MONDAYS air drama en route to the Antipodes which led to their appearance at the BIG DAY OUT festival in AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND.

The band were tied up in a dangerous air mishap while flying towards Auckland, which led to them having to leave the plane.

The event’s promoters told NME.COM earlier today that the plane’s windscreen broke mid-flight and the the pilot was forced to make an emergency landing at a Bahrain airport.

No-one was injured in the incident and the group arrived in Sydney just hours before they were due to play at the Auckland leg of the music festival alongside groups including Placebo, PJ Harvey, Limp Bizkit and Coldplay.

The publicist Big Day Out, Miriam Clements, said the group had been traumatised by their ordeal.

“After arriving in Sydney it may have been possible for the group to have flown immediately to the festival and arrived minutes before their scheduled time,” she said.

“But after what they had been through, they decided they didn’t want to

catch another plane straight away.”

It had earlier been thought that the Mondays had been put off the plane for in incident involving the group, but promoters for the event said the group played no role in the damage.

The Happy Mondays have confirmed that, mid-air mishaps permitting, they will perform at The Big Day Out on the Gold Coast tomorrow.

NME.COM can also confirm that the reason Black-Eyed Peas rapper Apl De Ap was

sent back to the US from Customs was at Auckland Airport was because he was found to be carrying a small amount of cannabis, believed to be in the form of a joint, on his person.

His departure from New Zealand was amicable and it is not known whether charges were laid. It is believed he will not rejoin the Big Day Out tour which, following the Gold Coast fixture, will visit Sydney, Melbourne,

Adelaide and Perth.