Call to help former pop star now sleeping rough in Camden Town
- Credit: Archant
He scaled the heights of chart fame with acid house act Adamski in the 1990s, but Chester Winfield Lashley has spent the past few years sleeping rough in and around Camden Town.
Now a campaign is being run to help the man formerly known as “Daddy Chester”, after a childhood friend heard of his plight.
Chester, 49, and his friend Adam “Adamski” Tinley had several big hits including the global smash Killer with superstar Seal, which peaked at number eight in 1991.
Chester was an accomplished DJ and MC on the British house scene, but while collaborator Seal went on to marry supermodel Heidi Klum and become a multi-millionaire, Chester fell on much harder times.
Camden-raised Chester said he became homeless after being dropped by record labels and surrounding himself with people who did not have his best interests at heart.
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He is estranged from most of his family, but said drink and drugs are not the reason why he became homeless.
He said: “Everyone assumes that because you’re on the streets, you must be a junkie. I’ve only ever smoked cannabis.
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“I do drink, but I’m not an alcoholic.”
Chester said he first slept rough after being thrown out by his landlord and lived in a garage for a year.
He said Camden Council evicted him from the garage, so he slept in a deckchair in a block of flats before becoming, in his words, “the most famous homeless person on Oxford Street”.
He said: “I’m not bitter about the fact that others did well and I missed out.
“There is no point in being angry.
“I am a peaceful person, but I put the emotions I feel into my music and lyrics. That’s how I express myself.”
Friend David Timlin now lives in Devon but previously lived in Camden, and has known Chester since they met at a Camden youth club.
He was moved when he heard of his old friend’s plight on Facebook and resolved to help him get his life back on track.
David launched a GoFundMe campaign earlier this month with the aim of raising £1,900 for a deposit, a month’s rent and some basic furniture for Chester.
David, 46, said:“Chester is one of the nicest people I have ever met.
“He is a larger than life character and many people from Camden will have crossed paths with him over the years.”
To help Chester out, go to gofundme.com/vzbcexug