Former Cradle of Filth guitarist Stuart Anstis has died aged 48, it has been confirmed.
The news was broken by another former member of the band, guitarist Richard Shaw.
“Rest in peace, Stuart. It was an honour performing your music,” Shaw wrote in an Instagram post.
He added: “Thoughts are with his friends and family at this difficult time.”
The band’s vocalist Dani Filth also paid tribute, writing: “It is with a deeply saddened heart that I have heard of the passing of my former guitarist Stuart Anstis at 48.
“Stuart -despite our eventual differences- was an amazingly talented guitarist who brought a real sense of magick to everything he wrote in Cradle Of Filth.”
Dani added: “For a long time he and I were bestest of friends living in a small village here in Suffolk and despite that relationship eventually changing, it did nothing to diminish the fan’s appreciation of his creative flair and talent right up to the present day.
“‘Vempire’, ‘Dusk… and Her Embrace’ (though written mostly by former members, Stuart played all the guitars on this album), ‘Cruelty And The Beast’ and ‘From the Cradle To Enslave’ would have been completely different creatures if it were not for the depth of his astute and deliciously dark musicianship.
“It truly is with a heavy sense of loss that we (and extreme music in general) bid farewell to Stuart,” he concluded.
“May sombre flights of ravens wing you to your grave mate.”
It is with a deeply saddened heart that I have heard of the passing of my former guitarist Stuart Anstis at 48. Stuart…
Anstis was only a member of Cradle of Filth from 1995 until 1999, but his time in the band coincided with their creative peak.
The guitarist proved an influential figure on their most iconic albums, 1996’s ‘Dusk… And Her Embrace’ and 1998’s ‘Cruelty And The Beast’.