Duke and Duchess of Sussex's wedding cellist has passport cancelled by Home Office

·1-min read
Classical cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason  - Theo Wargo /Getty Images North America
Classical cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason - Theo Wargo /Getty Images North America

A cellist who played at Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding has been left without a British passport after it was cancelled by the Home Office when he tried to apply for a second one.

Sheku Kanneh-Mason, who won the BBC’s Young Musician award in 2016, had applied for a second passport to assist with visa applications and international work permits.

But last Thursday the Nottingham-born musician discovered the Home Office had cancelled his original passport with “no explanation” provided.

This is despite his sister Isata Kanneh-Mason, an award-winning pianist, submitting the same paperwork 15 minutes apart and receiving both the original and second passport within a week.

Kanneh-Mason wrote in a Facebook post: “Despite constant calls I have no explanation, no forthcoming assistance and no way of playing the engagements I am contracted to play. Ideas appreciated asap please."

The musician has called on the Home Secretary, Priti Patel, and the Culture Secretary, Oliver Dowden, to provide an explanation.

Kanneh-Mason became the first black musician to win the BBC award since the competition's launch in 1978.

He plays an Amati cello made in the early 1600s.

A Home Office spokesman said: "We apologise to Mr Kanneh-Mason for any inconvenience caused as a result of this incident, which was due to human error. We have now issued him with a replacement passport."

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