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Martin Kemp, 62, fears he has 'ten years left to live'

The Spandau Ballet father is the father to Capital FM presenter Roman Kemp

Martin Kemp sitting on a sofa in a blue shirt
Matthew Moore
Online News Writer & Diversity and Inclusion Lead
May 4, 2024
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Martin Kemp has opened up about his fears that he might have "ten years to live" following the diagnosis of two benign brain tumours in his 30s.

Speaking on the podcast he shares with son Roman Kemp, FFS! My Dad Is Martin Kemp, in an episode titled 'Death', the former Spandau Ballet performer shared: "I'll be really honest with you, 10 years," when asked about how much longer he believed he'd be alive.

Harleymoon, Martin and Roman Kemp at a VIP screening in 2015© Getty
Martin spoke on the podcast he shares with his son, Roman

The 62-year-old added: "I don't know how long I've got left, but I will tell you, since I was the age of 34, when I went through all of that brain tumour scare, I spent two years of my life thinking I was going to die. And I think after that, everything else, every day, every year, every month that I've lived, every experience that I've had has been a bonus."

Speaking about accepting his fate, Martin continued: "And I will tell you something, it's really strange that when I was 34 and stuff and I went through that brain tumour stuff, I was practically resigned to the fact that I was going to die, but I was quite happy with my lot, because I had lived the most incredible experiences."

Spandau Ballet on the red carpet in 2015 © Getty
Martin rose to fame as part of Spandau Ballet

"I've lived the most incredible life. By the time I was 34 and I thought I was going to die, I spent two years thinking about it, I was quite happy, I thought: 'If I go, do you know what? What a life, and that was back then'. So every year that I live, every month that I’m alive now is like a bonus."

In 2014, Martin admitted on Piers Morgan's Life Stories that he had been diagnosed with two benign tumours after his wife, Shirlie, noticed a mass growing on his head and encouraged him to get checked.

Shirlie Kemp in a black jacket and Martin Kemp in a black and white jacket© Dave Benett
Martin's wife encouraged him to get checked

He told the presenter: "If they'd never found this one growing out, they wouldn't have found the one in the middle until it was too late, and that was the one that would have killed me."

Martin underwent surgery to have the tumours removed alongside radiotherapy. Despite the success of the operation, the star now has to take medication to combat epilepsy, which is a common side-effect from the surgery.

Martin was one of the many stars to have supported the Princess of Wales when the royal went public with her own cancer diagnosis on 22 March.

READ: Roman Kemp pens heartfelt message as he marks major milestone: 'It won't sink in for a while'

EXCLUSIVE: Martin and Shirlie Kemp reveal how relationship has changed during 36-year marriage

The former EastEnders star shared a family photograph where they were joined by the Princess of Wales, sweetly writing: "Sending so much Kemp love to the Princess of Wales and all her family."

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