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    Excitement growing ahead of Coldplay's Christmas Mencap concert

    mencap4logo.jpgExcitement has been growing around the world following the announcement that Coldplay will play a homecoming gig in Exeter in the run-up to Christmas. Full discussion on this Coldplay date can be found at the Coldplay Live forum here onwards. We will have more on the ticket news and availability soon.


    As revealed recently through Anchorman on Coldplay.com and the online Exeter Echo, the band will arrive in the Southwest of England for a one-off concert at Exeter Castle on Saturday, December 19, in aid of mental health charity Mencap. Also on the bill is Lily Allen and La Roux but tickets have been limited to 500.


    This is expected to result in a mad scramble when they go on sale next week. Coldplay fans from around the world have been expressing their jealousy at not being able to attend the once-in-a-lifetime event. They have been flooding internet message boards in their thousands on social networking sites such as Facebook providing almost unparalleled publicity for Exeter.

    Fans from countries including India, Bali, Macedonia and Argentina are among those expressing their envy at city folk who have the chance to hear their heroes. Writing on a Coldplay fansite, Michelle McDougal said: “Exeter is my home town and I don’t arrive back there from the US until the 21st. I can’t believe it.” Kirsten Scudds said: “What an awesome line up, I don’t want to live in Adelaide anymore.”


    Meanwhile, top DJ and television presenter Jo Whiley has revealed she has a personal reason for bringing Coldplay and Lily Allen to the city. She has been a longtime supporter of concert beneficiary mental health charity Mencap as her sister, Frances, suffers from a rare, genetic condition known as Lejeune’s Syndrome or cri du chat, the French for call of the cat referring to the characteristic cat-like cry of affected children.


    The symptoms mean her sister has no sense of danger, suffers from outbursts and temper tantrums, obsessive behaviour and a short attention span. The illness is congenital and Jo, who is married to Steve Morton and has four children, India, Jude, Cassius, Coco and Lux, is a carrier. In 2006 she said that she had been tested at each of her pregnancies, and that she would have terminated a pregnancy if the tests had proved positive. Jo is a leading force behind Mencap’s Little Noise Sessions. Jo said: “‘Exeter is a part of the world I love. I know it means a lot to Chris to be doing this final gig of the year as a homecoming. I can’t wait to be there.”


    Tickets for the concer will be available from Tuesday, December 8, subject to subscription, at www.littlenoisesessions.org.uk costing £50. Exeter residents have an additional chance to buy tickets as a limited number will go on sale at HMV, in Princesshay, Exeter, on Thursday, December 10, before going on general release the next day.


    The latest portrait exhibits at the Exhibition Room (at Coldplay.com):


































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