Wednesday, April 28, 1999 Published at 15:22 GMT 16:22 UK
The Verve split up
The Verve: Their last album Urban Hymns was a huge success
Rock band The Verve have announced they have split up, after months of rumours over the future of the group.
The group, who hit success at the 1998 Brit Awards following their Urban Hymns album, were rocked by the departure of guitarist Nick McCabe last July, which threw their future into confusion.
Singer Richard Ashcroft said the band took the decision to part company together.
He said: "The decision to split the band did not come without a great deal of distress to me personally.
"I have always given everything to the band and would have continued to do so if circumstances had not made it impossible."
McCabe's sudden departure last July was supposed to be temporary, but he did not record with them again.
Veteran guitarist BJ Cole was drafted in to help The Verve fulfil festival commitments.
Recently Ashcroft was reported to be recording material away from the band.
New album for Ashcroft
"I can now move forward and put my energies into new songs for a new album."
Ashcroft is currently working on a new album with the band's drummer Pete Salisbury.
However, bass player Simon Jones did not rule out the rest of the band reforming in the future.
He said: "The remainder of the band - myself, Nick McCabe, Simon Tong - are continuing to work on our own projects, while Pete Salisbury is currently working on Richard's new album.
"The rest of the band might even work with each other in the future. If this happens it won't be as The Verve."
It is not the first time the band have parted. In 1995 they split up with no intention of reforming, following a row between Ashcroft and McCabe just as they were achieving commercial and critical acclaim.
But they reformed in 1997, and Bitter Sweet Symphony became one of the year's anthems. But the following year McCabe dropped out of The Verve's live dates, and never worked with them again.
Footage from the group's 1998 homecoming show in front of 33,000 fans at Wigan's Haigh Hall will be included in a posthumous video documentary about the band, The Verve - The Video 1996-1998, to be released next month.
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