Pete Doherty suffered 'serious anxiety attack' before cancelled Libertines gigs

Doherty disappeared without notice, forcing the band to pull out last-minute

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The Independent Online

Pete Doherty failed to turn up to The Libertines' Camden gig last week after suffering a "serious anxiety attack".

The frontman, who recently announced that he was clean following a long, well-documented battle with drugs, went missing before the show, forcing his band to pull out last-minute after keeping fans waiting for more than two hours.

Management described the reason for cancellation as a "medical situation" but a statement has now appeared on Doherty's Albion Rooms website, explaining more about what happened.

"Peter suffered a serious anxiety attack during the hours leading up to the scheduled performance at the Electric Ballroom last Thursday," the post read.

"The ideal coping mechanism in this situation is to lock yourself away from the source of the anxiety and in this case he headed to a hotel near Coventry in the early hours of Friday morning, in order that he be close to friends in his support network."

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Pete Doherty at the Hope Rehab Centre in Thailand

Doherty's counsellor Dylan Kerr provided further details on the nature of the mental health condition, which affects thousands of people in the UK alone.

“Anxiety is notoriously subtle and greatly prejudiced against and sometimes there are no obvious outward signs at all," he said. "It is purely a psychological experience and the person must do whatever is necessary to arrest those feelings.

"It is a good thing that Peter is trying to live a normal life, as these are the reactions to stress that you’re taught to use in rehab – rather than shutting yourself away, avoid the stress and resume some normality.”

 

A link to mental health organisation MIND followed Kerr's words, and it was emphasised that management, not Doherty, cancelled the subsequent Manchester gig to allow him to recover.

"Management felt it important to ensure Peter's welfare is a priority in line with any other ongoing treatment," the statement continued. "Obviously the time away from the spotlight enabled the band to meet their existing commitment in Berlin and the Albion sails on course."

The Libertines are "keen to make it up to anyone who felt disappointed" and news on rescheduled London and Manchester dates will be announced soon.

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