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Seven things you should know about Kate Bush

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As Kate Bush announces she is to tour for the first time since 1979, in a London residency at the Hammersmith Apollo, here are seven things you should know about the legendary Wuthering Heights singer-songwriter.

1. She's afraid of flying

The 55-year-old singer has toured only once before, for six weeks in the UK and Europe.

As well as a fear of flying, she was left traumatised by the accidental death of her lighting director, Bill Duffield during one of her 1979 concerts.

2. She likes to keep a low profile

She retreated from the public eye in 1979 and since then has made only three high-profile appearances - in 1982 at a Prince’s Trust concert, at a 1986 Comic Relief show, and in 1987, when she was joined by Pink Floyd's David Gilmour for a rendition of Running Up that Hill at The Secret Policeman’s Third Ball.

3. She's from a musical family

The Kent-born singer's mum was a dancer, her dad played the piano and her brothers were into the local folk scene. As a teenager, a demo tape she circulated in the industry was said to have been repeatedly turned down until Pink Floyd's David Gilmour came across it and signed an exclusive deal with her - to take effect after she finished her O-Levels.

4. Wuthering Heights wasn't intended as her break-out single

EMI reportedly wanted to make Bush's debut single the rock song James and the Cold Gun, but she started as she meant to go on and insisted on Wuthering Heights. It was the right choice - the song short to the top of the charts and remains her biggest-selling single.

5. She turned down James Bond

Bush was asked to sing the theme tune for the 1979 film Moonraker but knocked back the offer. The gig eventually went to Shirley Bassey.

6. She's a committed vegetarian

Kate is a longtime, devoted vegetarian and animal rights supporter. She was pictured wearing fur on her 2011 album Words For Snow and rushed to write an open letter to fans reassuring them the material was fake. She had previously said of fur coats "I don’t believe in wearing them."

7. She put Lenny Henry on her album

She's certainly got a quirky sense of humour. Bush's 1993 studio album The Red Shoes featured the likes of Prince, Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck and Gary Brooker - and Lenny Henry. She's also joined forces with Rowan Atkinson for a rendition of Do Bears in 1986

Images: Rex Features

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