Simply Red To Split.

Simply Red are splitting up a quarter of a century after the band was formed, Mick Hucknall has revealed. Announcing the end of the group, Hucknall, 47, who recently became a father for the first time, said that 25 years was "long enough for anybody."

Simply Red first made their mark on the UK charts with the single "Money's Too Tight (to Mention)," which reached number 13 in 1985.

Like Joy Division and The Smiths, Hucknall was inspired to form a band after watching the Sex Pistols perform at the legendary 1976 Lesser Free Trade gig in Manchester.

Hucknall's first outfit, the Frantic Elevators, split after seven years in 1984.

In the same year, Simply Red was formed with local session musicians.

The band's name was inspired by Hucknall's love of Manchester United, his Left-leaning political affiliations and the colour of his hair.

Simply Red has sold more than 50 million albums.

In recent years, the line-up has changed and their success has failed to match that of earlier times.

Stay, which came out this year, was the band's third album to be released under their own label simplyred.com, and reached number four in the UK charts.

Hucknall said Stay would be Simply Red's final studio album, and they would split after a tour already planned for 2009.

Hucknall told a radio station: "There will be an end to Simply Red. I've kind of decided that the 25 years is going to be enough, so I intend that the 2009 will be the last Simply Red tour."

Photo & material: manchestereveningnews.co.uk