Anniversary of Prince’s death commemorated with 150 purple candles in St Albans

PUBLISHED: 21:00 24 April 2017 | UPDATED: 08:28 25 April 2017

Prince's Anniversary - Perry Gorton/Alison Blakeburn and Bev Knight light purple candles in memory of Prince.
Picture : Karyn Haddon

Prince's Anniversary - Perry Gorton/Alison Blakeburn and Bev Knight light purple candles in memory of Prince. Picture : Karyn Haddon


One year after Prince’s death, about 150 purple candles were lit in St Albans Cathedral to remember the popular musician.

Prince died at 57 years old on April 21, 2016 after accidentally over-dosing on painkillers, to the shock of fans around the world.

In the days following his death the star was described as “elusive and enigmatic” by the BBC, a “prodigious hit-maker” by the Guardian, and a “sole authentic genius” by the Telegraph.

Super-fan Perry Gorton, a pest-control technician who lives in Hemel Hempstead, organised the tribute to Prince to commemorate the anniversary of his death.

Each purple candle has been requested by a Prince fan on Perry’s Facebook timeline, and there were also pictures of the pop star put up around the church.

Perry said the Cathedral was happy to host the commemorative event, especially he had to find somewhere large enough for all of the candles.

Perry said: “I have been a Prince fan since I was 15 years old, we have all been massive fans since his music was different and took me to another level.

“We paid our tributes to him for what he has done in the music industry, and he has given us many years of happiness with his music.

“It was great day, emotional and a little tiring, but it went well and the cathedral staff were so helpful and accommodating of our requirements.”
He described the anniversary of the death as a “very sad day”.

Perry is the founder of one of the largest Prince Facebook fan-groups in the world with more than 40,000 members, called Prince - The Living Legend.

He famously sang Purple Rain, When Doves Cry, and Partyman.

A new Prince album, made up of before unheard studio recordings from 2006 to 2008, was scheduled to be released to commemorate the anniversary.

However the title track, Deliverance, was pulled from streaming services on April 19 after a lawsuit was filed by Prince’s Estate and Paisley Park against the producer, George Ian Boxill.

The lawsuit claims Boxill signed an agreement, stating all of his work with Prince is exclusively the singer’s sole property.

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