It is with great sadness that we report that Robert Heaton died suddenly on Thursday November 4th 2004. A multi-talented instrumentalist and song-writer, Robert joined the band in 1982 and for the next fifteen years co-wrote many of the band's greatest songs, including being responsible for all the music to the anthem 'Green & Grey'. A consummate professional when it came to recording and performing, in public Robert was the powerhouse behind the rhythm driven sound of New Model Army. In the media and in private, he was always the perfect gentleman.
Robert left NMA in 1998, having recovered from surgery to remove a brain tumour, and since then has worked tirelessly to promote live music and original talent in his home town of Bradford in Yorkshire. His latest project, Fresh Milk, is such a scheme - encouraging young bands, playing wholly original music, onto the live circuit by producing low cost, high quality live recordings for them. He had also been working composing film scores for independent films as well as working on his own new material under the guise of Gardeners of Eden.
A post mortem has determined that Robert had been suffering with pancreatic cancer and it is almost certainly this that was the cause of this unexpected tragedy..
Robert's passing will be mourned by family, friends and fans around the world. He leaves a wife, Robin, and young son, Marlon.
Tributes to Robert have poured in from all over the world and obituaries have run in many publications including The Independent, The Times and MOJO magazine. The text of these is accessible below, but perhaps the most fitting and heartfelt tribute is that posted by former NMA bassist Moose on his website on his return from Robert's funeral service.
Rest in peace Robert, you are greatly missed
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