WHEN performer James Blunt, plays his concert at Utilita Arena, on Monday, February 17, as part of his Once Upon A Mind tour, he will be doing more than just making music.

The former British Army officer will also be fundraising for a cause close to his heart, Help for Heroes, with volunteers from the charity collecting donations from the generous concert-goers.

The funds raised at the concerts will add to the money that the chart-topping superstar has also pledged to Help for Heroes from the proceeds of his heart-breaking ballad, Monsters.

He wrote it as an ode to his father who has been diagnosed with stage four chronic kidney disease and urgently needs an ‘O positive’ kidney donor.

The singer said: “I’ve seen first-hand how difficult life can be for veterans transitioning from the Armed Forces into Civvy Street, it can be especially hard if they’ve been medically discharged and need to cope with health issues on top of finding a new career.

“That’s why, as a patron of Help for Heroes, I’m giving a portion of my proceeds from the song ‘Monsters’ to the charity – and why I’m very happy for them to be collecting donations at my concerts.They do fantastic work."

The money will enable Help for Heroes to support those who have become wounded, injured or sick as a result of their service – giving them and their families the help they need to recover and get on with their lives.

David Walker, Help for Heroes recovery manager north, based at Phoenix House in Catterick, said: “James has already given us great support, having been a patron for many years. Across the UK there have been almost 40,000 people whose military career has ended in the past 20 years because of physical or mental injury, and every day this number grows. James’s fantastic generosity will help us ensure that we can be there to support them, whenever they need us.”

The concert in Newcastle is one of nine in the UK leg of his Once Upon A Mind tour which will see the ‘Goodbye My Lover’ singer playing over 60 concerts across Europe, Australia and New Zealand.