Book of condolence is opened for Alvin Stardust in Mansfield

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A book of condolence for Alvin Stardust opened at Mansfield Museum today.

Coun Kate Allsop, Portfolio Holder for Regeneration at Mansfield District Council, signed the book on behalf of the Council.

Alvin’s close friend of 55 years, Barry Steel, who helped to arrange the tribute, and Alvin’s PA and tour manager of 15 years Dave Harness were also among the first to pay tribute. A steady stream of visitors came to the museum throughout the day to pay their respects.

The book of condolence will be at the museum’s reception desk from 10am to 5pm, Monday to Saturday, until 20th November.

The book will be presented to the star’s widow Julie Paton as a lasting tribute from the people of Mansfield.

Coun Allsop said: “It is very sad. He was a lovely man who did so much for Mansfield Museum and the Palace Theatre over the years. The number of people who have already signed the book is testament to how well-loved and respected he was in Mansfield.”

Dave Harness runs the official online encyclopaedia and is asking people to submit photos and memories they have of Alvin to the website so he can create a tribute page.

The glam rock icon, who died last week, had close links with the museum - lending the Leeming Street venue costumes for a special exhibition in 2009 and even playing an acoustic set for visitors.

He died on Thursday, 23rd October - the same day that the new Made in Mansfield exhibition featuring some of his earlier Shane Fenton performances opened at the museum.

His funeral will be held on Wednesday, 5th November, in Wales - complete with a traditional send off by a choir singing Calon Lan.

Showbiz friends will attend the service in the church where Alvin married his Swansea-born wife Julie Paton.

Born in London, Stardust grew up in Mansfield, and started playing guitar as a schoolboy.

The singer - real name Bernard Jewry - started out in the music business in the 1960s but became a huge star on the back of the 1970s glam rock scene, scoring hits with tracks including My Coo Ca Choo and Jealous Mind.

He died recently, aged 72, after short battle against metastatic prostate cancer.