VETERAN singer Gerry Marsden has apologised after fans walked out when he “launched a foul-mouthed tirade” against police during a performance.

The Liverpudlian performer’s manager said his client had agreed to “tone it down” after a “rant” about the Hillsborough disaster during a concert at Darlington Civic Theatre on Saturday night.

But his manager denied reports that the singer had referred to police officers as “pigs” and had said they were “f****** liars” while on stage.

Robert Pratt said: “Only two people walked out.

“I never heard him call them pigs, I never heard him call them effing liars.

“He did rant about the findings but I never heard him say those things.

“He did call them ‘lying bastards’.

“Gerry is a very passionate person and is very passionate about the Hillsborough situation and he had been very much involved in it down the years.

“The (theatre) management did make us aware there was a couple who walked out on the night.

“Gerry and I spoke, and much as it is very close to his heart and he is extremely passionate about it, he agreed that he should tone it down.

“If it did offend anyone he sincerely apologises.”

The Northern Echo revealed this morning how the lead singer of Gerry and the Pacemakers upset several audience members with a five-minute outburst during the ‘60s Gold Tour 2012 concert.

One member of the audience said the singer, whose Liverpool FC anthem You’ll Never Walk Alone has re-entered the top 40 this week after the publication of a damning report into the 1989 tragedy, referred to police as “pigs” and “f****** liars”.

The concertgoer, a retired policeman who has asked not to be named, this afternoon accepted the apology, but stood by his recollection of the languiage used by the singer.

The ex-policeman believed Marsden was criticising all police officers during the outburst, not just those who failed to keep fans safe at the 1989 disaster or who were involved in the cover-up.

But Mr Pratt insisted: “It was all about Hillsborough, nothing else.

“He has some good friends in the police, including the chief constable in Liverpool.”