'Baker Street' star Gerry Rafferty seriously ill in hospital

Singer Gerry Rafferty has been seriously ill in hospital after collapsing five days ago.

The Scottish songwriter, best known for Baker Street, was reportedly admitted to the Royal Bournemouth Hospital with suspected kidney failure.

A statement released by Rafferty's family yesterday said: "He is comfortable and with close family."

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The singer has received treatment for liver failure in the past.

His fiance, Enzina Fuschini, said: "Gerry is strong and I'm praying he pulls through."

Rafferty is thought to have taken ill and collapsed at home last Friday night, but his condition has improved since he was admitted to hospital.

A spokeswoman for the Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust said: "The trust is not in a position to confirm personal details about individuals for reasons of patient confidentiality."

In February last year, his solicitors issued a statement saying he was "extremely well" and composing new songs at his home in Italy. It was released after reports friends had not heard from him since he "disappeared" six months earlier while being treated at a London hospital for liver failure.

Rafferty is best known for the 1978 song Baker Street but also had a huge hit in 1972 with Stuck in the Middle With You with his band Stealers Wheel.