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Suffolk singer Ed Sheeran cancels St Louis concert after demonstrators clash with police

PUBLISHED: 06:51 17 September 2017 | UPDATED: 06:51 17 September 2017

Ed Sheeran is due to swap the big stage for an intimate living room gig for the Give A Home fund-raiser organised by Sofar Sounds and Amnesty International.  Picture: KEVIN WINTER

Ed Sheeran is due to swap the big stage for an intimate living room gig for the Give A Home fund-raiser organised by Sofar Sounds and Amnesty International. Picture: KEVIN WINTER

Kevin Winter

Protests in a US city where a white former policeman was found not guilty of murdering a black suspect have led to Suffolk singer Ed Sheeran cancelling a concert tonight over safety fears.

Protesters and police line-up in St Louis. Picture: AP/JEFF ROBERSONProtesters and police line-up in St Louis. Picture: AP/JEFF ROBERSON

The Castle on the Hill star, who is in the middle of his US tour, announced on his website yesterday that fans with tickets for his gig at the Scottrade Center (sic) in St Louis would be refunded.

The city has seen two days of protests with hundreds marching through the streets chanting “Black lives matter”. The protests are reported to have been mostly peaceful though pockets of disturbance saw 11 police officers injured and more than 30 protestors arrested.

They have been held after the acquittal of former police officer Jason Stockley, 36, who was cleared of murdering Anthony Lamar Smith, 24, after a car chase in 2011.

The heavy police presence has meant too few officers were available to provide security for events, including Ed’s concert tonight and another performance by U2 that was scheduled to take place last night.

A statement on Ed’s website read: “With the safety of the fans being of upmost concern, and after consulting with local officials, who could not fully commit to providing a sufficient amount of police and other city services support, we felt it was in everyone’s best interest to cancel Sunday night’s show. While we regret to have had to come to this decision, we do look forward to returning to St. Louis as soon as Ed’s schedule will allow in 2018.”

Ed’s tour is set to continue with concerts in Washington, Boston, Pittsburgh, Detroit, New York and Columbus over the coming weeks.

The singer, who grew up in Framlingham, is then heading off to Taiwan for the start of his Asian tour.

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