George Michael dies, aged 53

Ex-Wham and solo star dies 'peacefully'

George Michael in 1999. RIP.

George Michael has died, aged 53.

According to a statement issued by his publicist, the world-famous British R&B and pop singer "passed away peacefully at home".

Thames Valley Police confirmed that South Central Ambulance Service attended a property in Goring in Oxfordshire at 13:42 GMT this afternoon, and that there were no suspicious circumstances.

Londoner Michael, born Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou, found fame with vocal duo Wham in the early- to mid-80s, clocking up 25 million record sales with chart-dominating hits like Young Guns (Go For It), Wake Me Up Before You Go-go and, of course, Last Christmas, before the band split in 1985.

His solo career was, if anything, even more successful, establishing him as a global superstar, and he sold another 50 million records along the way.

In the statement, Michael's publicist said, "It is with great sadness that we can confirm our beloved son, brother and friend George passed away peacefully at home over the Christmas period.

"The family would ask that their privacy be respected at this difficult and emotional time. There will be no further comment at this stage."