Terry Hall had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer which had spread to his liver before his death.

The late Specials frontman's bandmate Horace Panter has revealed Terry, who was 63, battled cancer and subsequently got diabetes when he was due to record a reggae album with his Specials bandmates in Los Angeles.

Horace, Terry and the ska group's guitarist Lynval Golding were headed across the pond to work on the record in November before he became too unwell.

In a Facebook post on Tuesday (20.12.22), he said: "Terry had the framework for 8 tunes. Confidence was high. We were set to meet up with Nikolaj [Larsen, Specials keyboardist] and make magic. This was in September. Terry e-mails everyone and says he’s in bed with a stomach bug and can’t do the first week of pre-production sessions. No big deal, we can knock everything back a week. We’re not due to fly out until November 4th.”

It was Terry's wish that his cancer battle was private.

Horace continued: “This is serious. Like life-threatening serious. He has developed diabetes due to his pancreas being attacked. This has to be treated first, then it’s a regime of chemotherapy. There is nothing anyone can do. Everything is put on hold. Terry is emphatic that no-one be told about this. If anyone asks, he’s managing his diabetes.

Horace anticipated that if the chemotherapy did it's job, they'd be able to get into the studio by March next year.

He said: “The chemo treatment starts favourably but it seems that it would be March 2023 at the earliest before we’d be in any position to work. He is in and out of hospital to stabilise the diabetes issue and also to manage pain. It then goes quiet.”

The 'Ghost Town' band's manager Steve Blackwell contacted Horace and said he feared Terry was “slipping away” on December 15, and he passed he a few days later on December 18.

Horace added: “He calls me on his return journey and says things are not looking promising. Terry is dying.

The next day he is put on morphine and is more-or-less unconscious for most of the time. I thought it would be best for me to go and visit but Lindy, his wife, advises against it.

“She has held her phone to Terry’s ear so that his sisters and Lynval can say their goodbyes. She suggests I do the same. So, I did. It was tough. Terry died around half past 5 the next evening, Sunday 18th December. The world has lost a unique voice and I have lost a good friend.”