Band tour manager dies in freak accident at gig

Singer of sea shanty group Fisherman's Friends also seriously injured at Surrey venue

The tour manager of sea shanty group Fisherman’s Friends has been killed in an accident at a gig in Surrey.

Tour manager Paul McMullen was killed and one of the band’s singers, Trevor Grills, seriously injured in the freak accident as the band were setting up for a gig at the G Live venue in Guilford. McMullen suffered horrific leg injuries when a heavy steel door fell on him on Saturday afternoon (February 9), hours before the group were due to perform, the BBC reports. Paramedics were called to the scene but were unable to save McMullen.

Grills suffered serious head injuries and was taken to St George’s Hospital in Tooting, London, where he remains in a serious condition. A statement issued by the band’s Jon Cleave today reads: “The Fisherman’s Friends are very touched and moved by all the concern and support shown for our friends Trevor (Grills) and Paul (McMullen). We’d like to express ours and Port Isaac’s thanks to everyone for that. It is part and parcel of our Cornish communities to pull together one and all in such times and that is what we are doing.”

It continues: “We are all deeply shocked and upset by the tragic loss of Paul McMullen, our dear friend and promoter: our thoughts are with his family at this very sad time. Paul was a great man and very much part of the Fisherman’s Friends family. Trevor is currently fighting for his life in the presence of his family and loved ones in St George’s Hospital, Tooting and all our love and thoughts are with them at this time. Until we have some more news we would ask that everyone respect the two families and ours and the communities privacy at what is a hugely difficult time for us.”

A statement from G Live said: “This is a terribly sad day and our thoughts are with the family of the deceased at this incredibly difficult time.” Surrey Police is investigating the tragedy as is the Health and Safety Executive, which investigates accidents at work.

Fisherman’s Friend, who formed in the early 1990s, consists of three fishermen and six others who all grew up around the Cornish village of Port Isaac, and another member from Yorkshire. After years of performing sea shanties in Port Isaac, they were filmed for a documentary, after which they were offered a £1 million recording deal with Island Records. They have since played the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury.