The stars of One Direction have offered their "sincere condolences" to the family of a stagehand who died while setting up the band's gig in Liverpool, England on Sunday (17Mar13).

Kevin Benson collapsed while working at the Echo Arena on Sunday morning ahead of the pop group's concert at the venue that night.

He suffered a cardiac arrest and sustained a head injury, and was taken to the Royal Liverpool Hospital, where he was later pronounced dead.

The pop stars have now issued a statement expressing their sadness in the aftermath of the tragedy.

The statement reads, "The band, who were at their hotel in Manchester at the time, offer their sincere condolences, and their thoughts and prayers are with Kevin's family at this difficult time."

A spokesman for the Echo Arena adds, "We can confirm that a contractor working at Echo Arena Liverpool was taken to hospital on Sunday morning. We understand that he subsequently died. Our sincere condolences go to his family at this sad time."