Belfast Telegraph

Westlife singer Markus Feehily reveals 'aggressive' homophobic attack forced him to leave his hometown pub

By Jess Denham

Former Westlife singer Markus Feehily has spoken about an “aggressive” homophobic attack that forced him to flee a pub.

The 34-year-old came under fire for his sexuality in his hometown of Sligo in Ireland and was left “shocked” by the ordeal.

“A man asked to take a picture of me, then four of his friends crowded round yelling, ‘What the f**k are you doing? Why are you having a photo with him, you gay? You queer!’” Feehily reportedly told The Sun.

“They said ‘gay’ about 30 times. It was so aggressive and intimating. The most upsetting thing was it was in my hometown. We left quickly, the fear kicks in. I was shocked.”

Feehily believes that despite big steps such as legalising same-sex marriage, there is a long way to go before homophobia is stamped out.

“It would be a big mistake to think it’s over,” he said. “Things are far from where they need to be.”

Five-piece boyband Westlife officially split in 2012 after a Greatest Hits album and farewell tour.

Feehily - who formerly went by Mark - launched his solo career in February with debut single “Love is a Drug".

He first disclosed he was gay in 2005 after seven years of keeping his sexuality private from the public. Feehily credits late Boyzone singer Stephen Gately for “helping him and probably lots of other gay lads to understand their sexuality and come out”.

Source: Independent

Read more:

Live stream: Northern Ireland MLAs debate gay marriage for fourth time at Stormont 

Ulster University probe into academic's anti-gay rant on Facebook 

Frank Lampard on being gay in football: "We are probably at fault as a sport" 


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